There are a lot of philosophies of thought around grief.
We resolve our grief. We find closure. We do grief work. Grief is a lifelong process. Grief is temporary. We move through grief. Grief is to be avoided. Grief is to be embraced.
The more I work with people who grieve and the more I explore my own experiences with loss the more and more I believe that it’s not about any of that. It’s not really even about the grief.
It’s all about the love.
When we lose someone or something that we love, our relationship with that person or thing changes. We still love them, we still love the idea of what was or what we had or the activity we used to do. The love doesn’t change. Our relationship changes and in that, the HOW of the way we love them changes.
Recently, as the anniversary of my daughter’s birthday is approaching this Saturday, I’ve been looking at my relationship with her and my beliefs about grief. And I’m realizing that it’s not about finding closure or resolving grief or working my way through it. It’s not about the grief at all.
Yes, there is sadness. There is a profound sense of missing her. There is even still the occasional moment of anger. But what matters to me is the love. I still get to love her. I still get to be her mother. I just also get to learn a different ways to love and mother her without her being physically present in my world.
Grief will ebb and flow, come and go. But Love, Love lives. It changes. It morphs. It expands and transforms. But it always lives.
And so there is love…
Today I heard your laughter on the wind
And the running of your feet in the rain
For a moment, the ghost of a scent –
Sweet scent of little girl bottled just for me
Close my eyes and there you are
Just the way I pictured you would be –
Beautiful and bright in every way.
I took a walk on the river side
Along the path, I swear, I felt your hand hold mine
And your whisper,
Look, Mommy, see how the sun sparkles
Like diamonds shining just for us
I whispered back of rainbows and daisies
And of love –
Love that never dies or fades away
I felt you spin and twirl beside me
Youthful girl I can only imagine you would be
Gentle brush of a kiss
And a giggle fading on the breeze
Happy Birthday, beautiful.
You are everything I dreamed you’d be.