Saturday, January 30, 2010

Stages of Grief

I am very, very tired, after having gone to the funeral home with my friend and sat in the same little room that my husband and I sat in seventeen months ago . . .

I came home and said to The Lovely Daughter that I am pretty much not believing it these days. I just think he will come home.

"Total denial," she said. You know, those stages of grief don't happen in sequence."

"I know that," I said. "Denial seems like a high-functioning place though. I spend most of my time there. I'm not angry too often anymore, and I can tell when I'm in acceptance, because then I just cry, because I get it."

She nodded.

"I've pretty much given up on bargaining. It didn't seem to work," I said.

"Mom, that is SUCH a denial statement," she responded.

"You have to know you're in denial when you talk about bargaining not working as if it might have. Only a person in total denial could think that there is anything plausible about bargaining."

I love my daughter so much. A couple of nights ago we were watching something ~ I have no idea what ~ on tv and one of the characters vocalized a long litany of recent disasters in her life.

"Do you remember what it was like when a statement like that was just dialogue on a tv show?" she asked.


Mompriest said...

ha! that was me just today talking to friend on the phone that I haven't talked too in a few exactly. a litany of all the things that have gone wrong in my life as if this is someone ele's life and I am watching it like a bad tv show....


((GG)) I'm sorry your life is like this too.

sucksalot (my new word)

karen gerstenberger said...

Thank God for her. She sounds like a great young woman.

I'll say it again: you sound so normal, to me. XO

Karen said...

Denial is my favorite country to live in, as daughters, too. We were just talking about this yesterday and all of us agreed that we still can't hang on to the thought, "He's gone", for very long without mentally changing the station. Daughters are a helpful companions on the journey, though.

artandsoul said...

I agree about "the stages" and their not following the nice orderly chronology listed out so helpfully in books.

Sometimes I am so overcome by a grief, that it knocks my breath out. And I wonder where that came from. Surely, surely, after all this time - after all that work - surely I've moved past "this"... right?

It seems to me it is only through. Through. Through and through.

Whenever and where ever the grief appears. Through.

I hope you get some rest.


Carol said...

I love the Lovely Daughter. She is a wise young woman.

Ruth Hull Chatlien said...

I'm so sorry for the overload of events you've been through the last week or so. I can't imagine returning to the same funeral home.

And I agree with the other posters that your daughter is an amazing young woman.

I'm not finding the classic "stages of grief" to be much help to me in processing my mom's death. Mostly, I seem to be mixing up her and God--attributing all her faults as a mother to God as my heavenly parent and then wondering why I feel so abandoned. It makes no sense at all, but that is what I've been going through. So what is that kind of projection? Bargaining, denial, anger, depression, or acceptance. It just feels like childish confusion.

Rev SS said...

I agree with Mompriest: sucksalot! And with all who confirm that you have a lovely, wise daughter.

Lisa :-] said...

There would be no way I could have been in that funeral home, had I been you. After my sister died, it was years before I could go into a hospital without the smell, just the smell, causing unbearable flashbacks. My mother-in-law died six months after my sister, and I could not go back to Illinois with my husband for the funeral. Couldn't deal with it on any level.

Beth P. said...

oh yes...thank you.

When I used to be a grief educator(does one ever stop being that?) we'd talk about the stages of grief being more like watching water in a front load clothes washer...

Thank you for this--