I’ve been doing this for 1,487 days.
If it takes two weeks to form a habit, I’m way past habit by now.
Except that, as C.S. Lewis says, “in grief nothing ‘stays put'” so even though it seems I am traveling the same road, walking the same territory, it shifts and moves so that I’m never quite sure of my footing.
And there ain’t nothing easy about it.
No flat spots to catch my breath. No downhill slope regardless of how many hills I climb. It seems that I never reach a patch that’s just a little less strenuous.
I wish I would.
I wish so badly that I could have two days strung together where I could just kind of coast along-no real effort required.
Last week I visited my oldest son in Florida. He’s really into CrossFit and while my joints preclude my participation, he convinced his younger brother to join in a friendly intra-gym competition.
As I sat watching Julian lift that weighted bar over and over all I could think of was, “This is hard, but it’s not the hardest thing you’ve ever done.”
When you’ve buried a brother (or a child) and lived each day since, there aren’t too many things that measure up to that level of difficulty.
I wish I could say that I’m better at this by now, but I’m not.
There are better days-I can laugh and rejoice and even sing-but when grief rolls over me it is just as devastating-every. single. time.
It doesn’t last as long.
And for that I’m thankful.
But ain’t nothing easy.
It’s still hard.
For in grief nothing “stays put.” One keeps on emerging from a phase, but it always recurs. Round and round. Everything repeats. Am I going in circles, or dare I hope I am on a spiral?
But if a spiral, am I going up or down it?
How often — will it be for always? — how often will the vast emptiness astonish me like a complete novelty and make me say, “I never realized my loss till this moment”? The same leg is cut off time after time.
~C.S. Lewis, A Grief Observed