"It helps to expect that you will be surprised. No one exactly like you has ever experienced a loss just like yours. Your inner clock, your inner landscape, your intimate story, is yours and no one else's.
It helps to understand that this will take you on an unpredictable journey. And that this change is a thing that happens in your body, not just in your soul.
It helps to know that your feelings can be complex and multiple. Sorrow and relief, love and anger, despair and hope can live together and yo-yo in astonishing ways.
It helps when you can welcome all the feelings, show hospitality, ask them all to tea.
It helps to give sorrow words - to tell your heart to those who know how to listen and love you--the ones who don't mind at all when you repeat yourself.
It helps to recognize that though your loved one dies, your relationship does not. It changes. It flows, it grows, it distills, it lives.
It helps to remember that there are things you will never know, never never figure out or reason your way to. You will never know what it was like for your loved one to live their life from the inside. This is a holy secret and a sacred mystery.
It helps to remember that beauty does not die.
It helps to know that when grief comes, it comes as teacher. It shows us what we fear, and what we love, what we hold true. It tells us, if we listen, a hundred ways to honor our loved one. It teaches us how we wish to live our days."
~ Toward eupan ~
~ marty alan michelson, ph.d.