Initially, the words that helped me to survive the first couple of years were those written by others who’d walked this path before me. I devoured articles and books on loss, desperate to find connection and the elusive feeling of being less alone. Amazon became my ‘go to’ place; books arrived and were placed on my bedside table, piled high, their pages folded or marked where some sentence had touched me, all read in fits and starts such was my lack of focus and utter fatigue. So now it’s my hope that in finding expression for my own grief through writing, my words will help someone else better understand their loss.
Grief work is hard work and quite frankly, very personal work. How could it be otherwise? It’s no surprise then that I don’t always want to bare my soul and that many bereaved parents choose to keep themselves to themselves. Writing about grief is tough, as is talking openly and frankly about the pain of loss. I have to dig deep and yet be able to reflect; I need to use words to describe what is emotional and undefined; I try to expose what is hidden and taboo so as to bring it out into the world. My loss is an open, bleeding wound that — for reasons that to me feel worthwhile and valid — I choose to share. I’m of the opinion that connection and understanding are what truly helps those of us navigating this uncharted land. But not all days are ‘sharing’ days, and often my loss feels so very private and intimate that I need to be with it alone. In those moments I shy away from people and stay low for any number of days. In the first years of grief, it was each and every day that my loss was mine and mine alone.
Featured photo courtesy of Pexels (Tatiana)
© Katja Faber 2018