Honestly- I try to forget some things and how they hit.
But I also remember that I didn’t properly grieve the first few times I lost someone- especially with my dad.
“There is a sacredness in tears. They are not the mark of weakness, but of power. They speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues. They are the messengers of overwhelming grief, of deep contrition, and of unspeakable love.”–Washington Irving
I turned off. I shut it all off. I went through the motions.
Which a lot of people- especially mental health professionals will tell you is not the way to approach it. It makes it all worse. (People who have learned the hard way will also tell you that.)
“Give sorrow words. The grief that does not speak whispers the o’er-fraught heart and bids it break.” — Shakespeare, Macbeth
Within the past few months- a few people in my life have passed away. So here I am- sitting at my keyboard. Wanting to crawl back to what I know with grief- but making sure I don’t repeat bad habits. Which is put it off until it begins to burst. I’m increasing my temp basals- and adding a little more insulin to my corrections and bolus. Trying to let myself feel it and process it. But you know what else happens? The people in your life you’ve lost- it hits again when another person in your life passes away. You remember how much you miss them.
“I should know enough about loss to realize that you never really stop missing someone-you just learn to live around the huge gaping hole of their absence.”–Alyson Noel, Evermore
Grief. It comes in waves. You’re not always ready for it either. Especially when you think you’ve done everything right. When you think it’s been long enough. When you’ve gone through- or jumped- around the 5 stages of grieving.
And you know- when you google diabetes and grief- and all the other forms of those terms- you know what I mostly see? Grieving a diabetes diagnosis- which I TOTALLY understand.
But again- there’s another part of me- a non-diabetes part of me- that will impact the diabetes. But yet again. The focus is on diabetes and not other aspects of my life. And that’s my mental health. That’s my grief.
My friend Kristen (also UGA Alum) wrote a blog post about grieving with T1D several months back- and this line- yeah- it covers it- “Diabetes isn’t fair, and grieving with it feels like a cruel joke.”
Recently, Amy from Diabetes Mine wrote a post about grief. A lot of hit hit for me and resonated, like this statement-
“just doing our best to “keep it together.” My endo seemed to understand that. And frankly, if she didn’t, it would be time for a new endo. Because, My Friends, life truly is too short to forgo compassion.”
“The deep pain that is felt at the death of every friendly soul arises from the feeling that there is in every individual something which is inexpressible, peculiar to him alone, and is, therefore, absolutely and irretrievably lost.” — Arthur Schopenhauer
Then it hits me- being a part of the chronic illness and mental health community- it means you’ll get those calls more often. The calls that you have news. The gut wrenching news that hits you everywhere- all at once- then again in moments.
I hold my breath for when the blue candles start if it’s diabetes related- because I know the intentions come from the heart- but they bother me so much.
Then I wait for the reactions online- the DKA awareness (if it’s diabetes related)- come swarming out. The scare tactics and fear take leaps and bounds. And seeing someone used as an example- it ignites a fire within me- and not the motivated kind of fire- the rage kind. Anger.
I struggle with the social media aspect when people pass away. How that impacts grief.
I cannot imagine what it would have been like when my dad passed away if social medial had been as big as it now. I don’t think I could have handled it. But there is that outpouring of love- so I feel conflicted. But I believe in waiting.
And I just don’t want people to find out via social media– especially if they’re close- especially if it’s recent. I hesitate to say or share anything in general- but especially until the closest loved ones know or have posted.
It’s tricky territory, right? And everything feels differently too.
And with where I stand and what I do. I wonder where my grief belongs- it feels like it shouldn’t be out-loud. But isn’t that against what I preach? Showing the good and the bad? But I just see the people in my life. That’s where it hurts me the most. That’s when grief really hits me.
But it’s one day at a time
“I don’t think of all the misery, but of all the beauty that remains.” –Anne Frank
“And when great souls die,
after a period peace blooms,
slowly and always
irregularly. Spaces fill
with a kind of
soothing electric vibration.
Our senses, restored, never
to be the same, whisper to us.
They existed. They existed.
We can be. Be and be
better. For they existed.” — Maya Angelou
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