A Journal of the Heart...
It really doesn’t matter if the person or pet in your life dies and it was an unexpected but expected death, the pain is excruciating and filled with so many feelings.
I remember when my Grandma was dying. It killed my heart every day to see her not able to get out of bed and be the magical little being that she had always been. She was miserable. The one little bit of joy that came to her in the end was the birth of my daughter. Oh the smiles! She was waiting for her birth and she quickly spiraled after she got to spend some visits with her great grandbaby. It was heart wrenching. I wanted her to die. She wanted to die. We talked about it. She was done. I just wanted her to have peace and to be with the love of her life again. Her death was expected….impending. And it finally happened. While I was devastated I also was so happy for her. She had an incredible life (until the last several years, but that is another story), and she got to spend time with her great grandbaby girl. But none of that erases the pain left behind. I want her here to spread her unconditional love that is so hard to find these days. I want her to hold her soon-to-be great, great grandson! Thankfully I know she is still around………..nope, it’s not the same. And to this day, 30 years later, I miss her and still shed tears for her.
When my brother was dying……….I never felt he was dying until the last year of his life. In the end though, it was VERY expected and I wanted him to die. I wanted him to stop hurting and trying to put on this strong game face every fu*k&ng day. Yes, he had an incredible life……….but it was so very short. He was very young. I have never seen someone fight cancer so gracefully, but one can only do that for so long. When he died, I was relieved. I was also pissed that the medical system didn’t catch the cancer sooner, but as David always said, “Carolyn, they’re just doctors, they don’t know what they’re doing………..that’s why they call it “practicing medicine”. He thought that was funny. I’m still experiencing a myriad of feelings about his death. But I am still happy that his suffering did not continue. And again, I know that he is still around. He lives on through Sacred Embers……..afterall, he was the catalyst for me to start Sacred Embers. But I still miss the hell out of him.
I know others that have experienced unexpected death………and expected. The feelings are all very much the same. There is anger, hurt, panic, relief, peace, anxiety, denial, blame, remorse of things said or not said, sadness, even happiness. There is not a right way to grieve or a wrong way. Grief is a GIANT ball of emotions that play pinball within your head and your heart……………daily. At some point it will ease. And some days it will seem so very fresh and raw.
As I always tell my Sacred Embers clients, “It never gets better, only different”.
The month of August is My Brother’s Month. It was the month that he was born and the month that he died. I have had a few other deaths in my life, but my brother was so young and had so much more to do. I miss him. I feel good kinda dedicating the month to him. I’m sure he would think that it’s overkill…..but there’s nothing he can do about it!
I think that it’s good for people to have a period of time dedicated to someone important to them that has died. It helps with the grieving, no matter how long it has been and it keeps them “alive”. It is honoring them and that it important. I’ve witnessed people wipe (figuratively), someone out of their life because they have died. And while I do agree that there is not a set way to grieve a loss, not speaking of them or bringing them up is not healthy. Our society needs to be more comfortable with death and loss. It happens. Every day. But the one common thread is that your love for them is not gone. It is not wiped away. Out of sight, out of mind does not apply. I know that I think of my brother every day. I talk about him with others. Mostly I can do this without tears now, but sometimes the tears come out of the blue, but that is o.k. As I tell my Sacred Embers clients; It never gets better, only different.
As many of you know Sacred Embers was born because of my brother's death. So with every Sacred Embers that I create I also feel that I am honoring him. Bittersweet, yes, but special. That is why I call Sacred Embers my heart work.
While throughout the year I have mini celebrations of my brother in my head or when I “cheer” him when I sip that glass of wine or thank him or ask him what would he would do, August is extra special.
So, this month, I will think more of David. I will have an extra glass of wine in his honor. I will have my own personal little ceremonies. I will celebrate his birthday. I will celebrate his death day. But I will always love and miss him. He will always have a place in my heart and my life.