Friday, March 21, 2014

Grief is a funny thing. It's different every time, like cooking a dish by heart, blindfolded.

Grief creeps into unfamiliar pockets you reach into, somehow, while in a meeting, while waiting for a traffic ticket, eating dinner, driving down a deserted gravel road in the middle of the night.

Stages of grief mean nothing to me. I've known grief as a violent wave, immediate, inundating, leaving me exhausted and drained. I've known grief tinged with relief. I've known grief as something absent. Grief as a reaching out and not being met. Grief can propel, create momentum. It can capsize your boat, or leave you dead in the water.

Grief is a fullness, an emptiness. A fullness of emptiness. I'm in awe of it, surprised by it, and sometimes even relieved to know it.

When I recognize grief, I try to make a space for it. Allow its whims and let it run its long and meandering course. Sometimes it runs ahead somewhere, pulled along by a phantom memory of what could have been, and when what could have been intersects with what is, I run the same course.

Photo: Great Salt Lake, Utah, 2010

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