I have been lying in bed, eyes open, mind racing for right around 2 hours now. I don’t know how to handle emotions, and I really truly do not know how to grieve. It seems like a process that people should go through without anyone telling them what right and wrong would be. It seems like a process that would involve feeling far more than thinking. For me, it isn’t.

As I was lying in bed a little while ago, I decided to check my myspace from my phone, which was plugged in beside the bed. As I was looking through the new status updates, I saw one from my sister. I pulled up the full update, only to see a sentence beside my grandad’s face. There he was, staring back at me. I’ve been running since Tuesday morning, but there he was, looking right back at me, as if nothing in the world was wrong. As if I could call him tomorrow and chat, or come by and take him to get an ice cream cone. As if he was fine, and didn’t know what all of this fuss has been about the past few days.

I cracked. For the first time since Tuesday morning, the tears started, and they wouldn’t stop. The memories came flooding back to me, and the pain of knowing that there will be no new memories hit me like a ton of bricks.

There will be no more phone calls, no more stopping by to see him, no more bringing him breakfast from Cracker Barrell or taking him for a ride up the side of a mountain and getting lost on the way back. No more “see ya later alligator, after while crocodile” or “I love you more” contests as we were about to get off the phone. No more late nights at the Waffle House or coming home to find him sitting in the doorway, AC on, and door open wide… and knowing full well that he was the one that used to get onto everyone else for exactly that. No more McDonald’s ice cream cones, or hearing him excited because he had walked again in physical therapy. No more him driving me to college, going to Cathedrals concerts, or going out to dinner with him, my mom, and my sisters. No more late nights walking Walmart, Saturday morning trips to the dump, or calling Gramps when the car breaks down or something on the house needs to be fixed. No more “I wonder where this road goes,” and then finding out that it wasn’t really somewhere we wanted to go after all. No more driving “around the mountain” to spend the day having a picnic and playing at Nickajack while he filmed the whole thing.  No more turkey and ham for the holidays. No more Gramps with the silly clown nose. No more Gramps with the red truck. No more Gramps with the Santa beard at Christmas. No more Gramps.

It hit me, and I didn’t know how to handle it. I still don’t. As I type this, I am still crying. There aren’t words, and maybe there aren’t supposed to be. There is nothing I can say that does him justice, and nothing anyone else can say that brings us comfort. Words are useless here. I used to think that people were afraid to talk about their feelings when they were grieving, or maybe there is some sort of taboo on death, where you aren’t really supposed to talk about it much. I don’t think it’s that at all… it’s just that there’s not a lot to say. It’s an odd feeling to have so much going on inside, but no real means, other than your tears, to bring what’s on the inside to the surface for others to see and hear.

And here I sit, trying to figure it all out… trying, as usual, to reason through my emotions, and to analyze what I’m feeling. So as I was lying in bed, my crying woke Nate up. He has to be at work very early in the morning, and had already gone to sleep. As soon as I realized he was awake, I tried to stop crying. I tried to put on the “strong” face, and for a few minutes, I could. He tried to console me, told me to put my head on his chest and it was ok to cry, and I’m not sure exactly what I told him. I think it was something along the lines of “I don’t know how.” And I didn’t. I know how to cry, and I grieve, but I don’t know how to let him be there for me. It feels wrong, somehow, to allow anyone else to see me cry, and even though he’s my husband, I don’t want to burden him with my emotions. As a result, I just don’t let him in to that part of myself. Tonight, I made the effort, because I couldn’t do it alone.

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