Friday, February 21, 2014

Nobody said this would be easy

Death is never easy. We've all heard that before. It not only brings a life to an end but it changes those that have been left to live on.

Since I work in the funeral business, you'd think I would be used to death. But daily, I see people's lives changed forever. It can be difficult to watch as families and friends cope with their loss. At the time of death, there is so much to take care of that it is difficult to grieve in a healthy way. Whatever traditions your family may have, must be adhered to. Wishes are met with the best of our ability. On our side of the table, there are forms to be filled out and filed, caskets to be ordered and a multitude of people to coordinate. Obituaries have to be written and emailed to the newspapers and information needs to be uploaded to websites. I am so fortunate to work with several of the industries finest. We make it all happen with no effort from the families at all.

When a death occurs, there seems to be a plethora of help surrounding you. Friends and family appear out of nowhere. They all want to help, and they do.

It's was May of 2011 when my mother died. And July of 2013 when my father followed in her footsteps. At those times, I dove in and did what I do best. I had a great support system in place on both sides of the table. But here it is, February 2014, and we've dispersed our separate ways. In many ways, I appreciate the fact that I am now able to start living my own life, independent of any ties. But there are times when I also don't know where to turn next. I don't know what my goals in life look like anymore. Just last night, in the middle of the night, I awoke choking on my own tears. I've never felt so lost and alone.

I'm not writing this to get sympathy from anyone. I am writing this as a reminder to anyone that has known someone that has experienced a close death, to be there for your friends and family. Sometimes, it's when you haven't heard from them in a while that they really need you the most. Even though it's been many months since losing my father and years since losing my mother, I still need someone to lean on at times. And I know that I am not alone. I know that many of you reading this have experienced the same things that I am going through and I hope that you have people around you that support you in any way they can. And likewise, we need to be there for them. This is one of the many reasons we have our friends and family in our lives. We should be there for each other in good times and in bad times.

I know I will get through this. Sometimes, when we look back at the trail we've tread, it's actually hard to believe we were scared or confused, or as uncertain as we were. Yet, we still rocked it. Remember that next time we feel scared, confused or uncertain. Call up that friend we haven't heard from in a while and we'll make it through. I will make it through. I have some amazing friends.


jaz@octoberfarm said...

hang in there! grieving is all about ups and downs until it finally mellows out.

MorningAJ said...

It's 14 years since I lost my Dad and almost as long since my mother died. I still have nights like that, when I suddenly realise how much I've lost. Just not so often these days. Take care. You do have friends out here.

Jim said...

Hi Stew. Thanks for being so honest here about your feelings/grieving. We all try to put forward a strong image but some days it is impossible. And that is okay as it shows there is a lot of emotion to still get out.
I remember when my mother died 7 years ago and I had a very difficult time. I was closest to her in my family so I had no one really in the family to talk to about it. But I had Ron and he encouraged me to feel what I felt and talk about it. I also used him as my role model....when his mom died about 15 years ago his world changed forever and it took a long time to recover from her loss. I watched him grieve and cry and become angry because of the way she died. Bi learned that it was OK to do this and saw that it really helped him to get it out.
Just like you are Stew.
The two comments above both say that it takes time.....cliche I know but SO TRUE. Be patient and allow yourself to is good for the soul.
Take care.

John Going Gently said...

Writing about this can be more cathartic than therapy