Grief is a strange thing. It will hit you all at once, then go away while you busy yourself with something, only to return at some trigger, a sound, a sight, a feeling, a thought. Memories flood your head. You want to remember everything, every moment, or maybe you don't. Maybe you try to ignore it, blast the sound in your car with the windows down, wind blowing in your face as you're doing 80 without even realizing it. The thumping music fills your head, distracts you, pushes memory and thought aside.
What do you use? Drugs? Work? Religion? Various vices to help you forget, make you ignore it, for a little while at least. It can put doubts about a loving God into your head. How can an all-loving all-powerful omniscient being let something like that happen to someone completely undeserving of it? A stroke? A skiing accident? Something else? The faithful will take comfort, and say something like it's part of God's plan. Part of God's plan? Maybe he needs to rethink his strategy because looking at the world today, it looks pretty goddamn shitty. They might also say “well now they're with God.” Well that's awesome for the all-powerful all-loving being, but what about me? Couldn't he have gone without them for a little longer? I guess He's selfish. I mean, He will eventually get to have them for eternity, right? So why take them now? I guess His Plan doesn't allow for much rescheduling. I don't know. Some people take comfort in organized religion, and that's all well and good for them. It doesn't do very much for me.
I wonder how much we should grieve? There's obviously no answer. There is such a thing as too much, when it becomes obsessive, when it detracts from living your life. There also can be too little. If you feel you didn't grieve enough, does that make you a bad person? Did you not care about them as much you thought you did? Or are you just becoming cold to the world? Too much or too little, and we have gotta ride the line over and over. The knowledge of meaningless death is the curse of our consciousness. Man, I gotta say that line's pretty damn good. Curse of our consciousness? Shit, I need to put that on the back of a self-help book or something. Hell it could even be the title. Eh, forget it, it's probably already been written by Dr. Phil.
Blogs are kind of strange. They feel personal, yet impersonal. They feel enclosed, as I know less then a handful of people will read this, yet in reality, it is completely open to the inter-connected world. Maybe that's why I keep things very general, unspecific. I'm unsure what I want to put out there in the world, even if I want to write about it.
So I wrote a thing.
When Something Happens
The phone rings and it's someone close. A family member, a parent or a sibling. You answer normally, no reason to expect that anything's wrong. Until they say they have 'bad news' about someone, someone you know, someone you're related to, someone you care about. Your stomach drops, your voice is suddenly morose and questioning. “What happened?” You say, perhaps expecting the worst, perhaps not. Maybe the person wasn't doing so good before, so it's always been in the back of your mind or maybe it's completely unexpected. They answer your question and you suddenly stand, unable to remain sitting. Tears well up. Your head is suddenly flooded with memories. You want to remember everything, every moment. Every interaction is a precious resource. “What?” Your voice is a croak. You already know what, but you can't accept it, it's too hard. It doesn't make sense. Can't make sense. Yet it does. Horribly logical if you rationally thought about it. But you can't. You react emotionally. You pace in your room, wanting to go, to leave, anywhere but where you are, doing anything but hearing the news you're hearing. You're still on the phone, hearing the other person talk but barely listening. Maybe the person on the other end is crying too. You finally fall into your bed, burying your head in a twisted pile of blankets and pillows. Finally, you get up, go to the bathroom, and splash water on your face, while taking deep breaths.