Today my heart aches; my soul aches. Grief is like that, you know.
One minute, you are moving along seemingly doing well in this new normal that is life and then it hits. Sometimes you may see it coming like the dark clouds of a storm rolling in across the field. You think to yourself, I’ll have time to go in and take shelter, but all too soon, the storm is upon you. Lighting illuminates your mind with a terrifying jolt of loss while the thunder shakes the ground in a loud tumultuous roar much like the cry of goodbye spoken far too soon. Tears soak you to the bone, and you find yourself alone in that field underneath the tallest tree, dripping with regret and dreading the next moment -- the moment the memories start to beat down, relentless, striking a chord in your heart you unassumingly thought was beginning to heal. In an instant, life is ripped away again, and you are left devastated. Then some loving soul who has weathered the same storm finds you, broken and beaten, picks you up and gives your heart a place to rest. They know the storm. It finds them too as it does you. You know it, too. You know its pattern. You know the days the storm is most likely to come. Yet this time, this time, you think it will pass you by. This time will be different because you’ve prepared. Years without your child have made you invincible, yet still, when it arrives, it finds you exposed, alone in that field, pleading with God for mercy and strength. How foolish you were to think you were safe. How foolish to think years of preparation could exempt you from the loss all over again.
Those of us entrenched in this storm of grief realize there is no pattern. There is no safe place. When the storm comes, it comes. Sometimes it doesn’t uproot you; sometimes it does.
The further into this journey I go, the more I realize there is only one certainty in grief. It always, always returns.
And much like an actual storm, so does grief blow in trapping you in a whirlwind for a brief time, only to leave a path of destruction you must rebuild. One can only hope next time, the damage will be less severe and the rebuilding time shorter than before.