Thursday, August 16, 2018

Mourning and Grieving

Mourning and Grieving

Part One

I grieve in my own way. Today I cried for a second as I looked down at the coffee mug my mother got me for my birthday last year. A friend recently had a loss and posted “I’m a private griever” -- a statement I could relate to. When I’m sick I want nothing more than to be alone, where when my wife is sick she wants me to bring her soup and make her feel better. I appreciate the dozens of messages of “If there is anything we can do…” but for me that is -- leave me alone. Which is totally contrary to my usual extroverted nature. That isn’t to say I wasn’t thankful for messages, notes, cards from my old fashioned friends, and even a telephone call from my even more old fashioned friend Eric, they really did make me feel good. My preference is to take them in on my own time and process them when I can. My friend Joe suggested I wear a shirt that says “I’m fine”

I’ve also started joking on twitter again and creating content, but not to the same level as I had before. It’s not that I’m insensitive, but this is my nature. This also helps keep my mind busy - so I can’t focus on negative thoughts.

Part Two

It has been a few weeks. I sort of moved on with my life and got busy with work again. Made it out to a game day and had a good time. As we approached the funeral, Gen Con was happening so I started participating in in the GenCant events online. I had a short work trip to Florida a few days before we left for “home” and started with some GenCant pictures from there and then continued with more on our drive through Michigan. It was fun and kept my mind off what was ahead. The first stop was my parents’ former home. I wasn’t sure who’d even be there. It was just one of my sisters. She told us the schedule for the morning which I already sort of knew. Then she picks up this can and says “here is mom”, suddenly it was real, and I felt quiver a little bit. I feel like I’m holding back a damn of emotion that is going to burst at some point or wondering I’m am I just all cried out?

Part Three

Today, the funeral, was a bit harder. I welled up a lot as dozens of long known family friends and relatives arrived at the church to say their condolences. I went through a dozen or so tissues. I sat quietly through the service, hummed along with the hymns and enjoyed the speakers. It wasn't until the very end -- when they piped through Amazing Grace on the bagpipes, I lost it. I sat and cried hard for about a minute, but this was supposed to be the family exit song. I stood up and arranged myself and saw my wife was consoling our son so I escorted my Aunt out of the sanctuary. At that point I think I was done crying for the day.

Part Four

On the drive home I saw some Green Packers Stuff at a store and I kinda sunk. I later described the event as “it took the wind out of my sails”. This is where I’m at. I just get a sinking feeling when I think to call my mom, or think mom would have liked that. Not horrible sadness. I don’t burst out into tears. Just a weight for a moment.


In retrospect a great deal of this is the time and place I grew up, with attitudes that men were strong and didn't cry kinda bullshit. I don't believe it but is still something sort of hard to shake. My first purpose for writing these posts during this process have been to work through my thoughts and emotions. My reason for posting is maybe others will realize that others grieve differently than they do, and that should be ok.

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