6 Months Later

May 25, marked 6 months since we lost Mark.

As much of the Psychology nerd that I am (it is my bachelor’s degree afterall), I can’t help but disagree with the infamous Kubler-Ross 5 stages of grief.

I firmly believe that grief takes it own form and is different for everyone– you can’t group it.

We all experience loss differently, even if we share a common loss. I experienced the long month of watching my father wither away and pass differently then my step mother/his wife did. We both found this to be comforting that we shared it, but also extremely isolating. She has felt incredible loneliness in her altered everyday life, while I have felt loneliness in watching all my peers have their parents to guide them in the scary journey of adulthood.

In a way, we both find it hard to feel that anyone could ever relate to the loss we are still going through. I think that is what I have learned most thus far– that no one will understand. Loss & grief is something profoundly deep and personal, yet universal. This makes it extremely lonely. You have so many emotions, moments, and even regrets that are unique to you.

I also have learned that in our society, grief is a very taboo subject. Sure, we are there in the immediate passing, but what about 4 weeks, 4 months, 4 years down the road? We move forward with our lives, while those dealing with the loss are often stuck. We stop checking in, which can come accross as stopped caring. We have learned that grief and loss goes far, far after the immediate loss.

We as a society need to re-imagine how we deal with grief. We need to realize that grief is lonely, heartbreaking, and a forever road. How can we give adequate support down the road?

We all experience loss in some shape or form, so let us learn how to care for eachother down the road.

My father always turned things into a life lesson. Somehow, he managed to turn his own passing into a life lesson that we are still learning 6 months later. That is just the force he was, and will always be.

-Emily

Author: Mark E. Smith

The literary side of the WheelchairJunkie

2 thoughts on “6 Months Later”

  1. Sadly, when you lose a parent the grief never ends; it just becomes more manageable. Here I sit on what would have been my parents 64th anniversary, wishing I could go back in time and hug both of them. My father’s death was unexpected, and at age 60 was a shock. My mother, on the other hand, had pancreatic cancer, which is a cancer with the lowest survival rate of them all. So different, and so many years between, but the pieces of my heart are still missing. I wouldn’t want to go back to the 6 months time period. It’s raw, unpredictable, and harder to manage. Sometimes you feel like you’re living a lie to the people on the outside, especially at work. Pretend like everything is normal, and don’t let them see your tears. People who don’t know you casually ask about parents or grandparents, and you feel sad when you answer that you weren’t one of the lucky ones to have your babies meet your Dad. And your kids didn’t have grandparents at school events like the others.
    But you will always have the memories. Sometimes they hurt. Sometimes you wish you could’ve done things differently. The greatest gift you can give your Dad is to live your life joyfully. My father once said if you grieve too long the person can’t Rest In Peace. I am guessing he was talking about his mother, who died when he was a teenager. As of June 8, 2019, I am guilty of grieving for 25 years for my father, and almost 7 for my mother. I hate it when people say it is just a part of life. It is, but it is the very saddest and unfair parts of life and we are forced to deal with them. Some of us sooner and more often than others.
    Continue to carry on your Dad’s legacy. You are sharing him with all of us who never met him. It’s obvious that he loved his girls very much, and that love will never end. I think it’s safe to say that he was (and still is) VERY proud of his Emily. 💕💕💕

  2. Yes, we all deal with death in our own way. At my age, 63, loosing friends and family members is becoming a more common occurrence in my life. Memories of times spent together are ultimately all that is left for us, so I encourage everyone to get out and share their time with their loved ones generously as this is how great memories are made😇

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