It has been an incredibly busy summer and fall. Mostly in a good way. "Busyness" is often a synonym for "denial." Is numb the same as denial? I often find myself feeling numb. I thought numbness was an early manifestation of grief, but maybe this is early. I think “early” will last the rest of my life.
Sometimes I feel angry, but this anger is not directed toward anyone or anything in particular. There is no blame to be attributed. Still, I’ll find myself spewing snippy, snappy, cynical quips. When I hear it, I don’t like myself, yet I allow this behavior to continue. I see a harsher me in the mirror and I don’t know how to soften the look.
Mostly, I’ve noticed a feeling of numbness that hadn’t been there earlier. And I spend a lot of time in the land of Denial, which to most probably looks like me living my real life, but it’s not – at least, not precisely. It’s me, sort of being real and sort of pretending.
The land of Denial, the numbness and the anger help me compartmentalize. Attending events, enjoying family and friends, participating in professional activities slip into compartments, which is different than detachment. It’s not that grief doesn’t seep into all compartments, it's that grief simply isn’t as deep or raw when I’m in one of the compartments I need for ongoing function. Trips to Denial, feeling numb and the anger are distractions from the real.
The real doesn’t slowly sneak in. The real is the sudden shock of a sucker punch to the gut.
The real is that I just want, but can never have, my second baby back. The real is that my family can never physically be intact again – the joking, poking, bantering of an integral member will always be missing. The real is that I miss Brandon the adult son so very much. The real is that an amazing little granddaughter is left without her daddy and a daughter-in-law who is beautiful inside and out is left without the husband she loved and had too little time with.
The real is a sadness so profound I cannot begin to adequately describe it.
I know life is short. I know God’s time is different than human time. I know our family will be together again on the other side of life on this planet. When I’m in the “right” compartment, I can appreciate all those things.
When I’m in the real, I just want my second baby back. I just want my baby…