Now 2 days away from burying my grandmother, the realization that she has passed is beginning to set in. Well, more like crawl in, or slither in... to the deep dark parts of my mind that hold things that I know to be true. This, being the first death to impact my whole being and way of life I came across some feelings I’ve never experienced before. I now realize that every loss I’ve encountered before was not as earth shattering as I had thought. I say this with the utmost reverence to all. But, I realize now how superficial I was. People would confide that someone they loved had passed and I would just say “Aw I’m so sorry, well the spirit can never die”. Which is all true but I never took the time to empathize. Truly, I never had the depth to. I had never had grief and loss cut such a deep hole in my soul to even begin to take in the enormity of what it is to lose someone who is more a part of you than not... but now I do.
Greif is likened to the ocean tides. It comes and it goes. At times I am content and satisfied, feeling at peace with it all and then at other times I am literally drowning, overwhelmed with tears and emotion unable to breath, unable to speak or move. I was pulled to a dark place. Explaining to myself how unfair life was and recounting all the times I’ve hurt my grandmother and how I could have been better. I wanted to sink into a dark slum of depression and sorrow, quit my job (which I still might) mourn and be melancholy. Then there are also thoughts of how fucked up the world is anyway. Like why wouldn’t someone want to leave? Heaven is so great I’d like to hurry up and get there too! I had someone say “Just appreciate what you still have.” Which didn’t go over too well because sometimes you feel like you have lost everything you have.
As I lay in bed at 4am, my own darkness blackening the room more than ever, something in me began to reflect on what my grandmother would want me to do. And so I began to pray. It was then I had a vision of all the times I’ve experienced with my grandmother and having those same experiences with my own granddaughter(s) and daughters. Watching her be born, calling her every day to check on her or her calling me to check on me. Diffusing fights between her and my daughter, lying in bed talking and laughing about nothing till the morning hours. I saw this all through love and light. And I put together that my grandmother wanted me to know not to go dark, not to let my light go out because I have my own story to tell. I have my own clan to head. I have countless nights of cuddles and love to pour out. And although my story was linked to hers thus far in my life now I will make new links. This was all now well with my soul. No, I have not stopped grieving. The tide may be high tomorrow or in the next 10 minutes but I have gained understanding. My grandmother was my best friend, my thunder buddy, my counselor, pastor, sister, doctor... and if I could ask just one more thing of her it would be to watch over me and mine as her mother’s mothers mother has done for her and I.
Love you always Gigi.