Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Grief again

Here's how grief works, that ugly little son of a ...

You're minding your own business-- a little tired, kind of frustrated, and suddenly it hits you: loss. That black hole in your gut that you keep covering with your arms, a sweater, a stack of books.... And you can't hide it. The tears are pounding like an insistent tenant and all of a sudden you know that your whole face is getting ready to be red and blotchy and you're at worship practice and all you can think of is Ben, Ben, Benjamin Joseph Swaney is not here. So you rush to the restroom and double over on the toilet and cry and cry, and when you look up, there is the most priceless piece of children's art on the wall-- of course. You're on the children's wing. And there's a portrait of a tiny newborn on the wall. And it's a knife. And you're not mad at God or your husband or anyone-- you just want him back, and you wonder if you'll ever stop thinking that stupid, pointless phrase over and over again...

And at the back of your mind, there is the smallest whisper of something deeper, something richer, and something you're not ready to put your finger on quite yet. Something about knowledge and experience and depth and how it all mixes up with grief and a tapestry and something meaningful.

But right now, almost nine months after his death, it just hurts.

Don asked me why I thought I was feeling it especially today. I don't know. Sometimes it just comes out of nowhere. Maybe it's because the author we read at school today talked about an "untenanted bird's nest...rocking back and forth like an empty cradle." The kids didn't see the depth of sadness there. Not like I did.

See, there's a level of richness that I have access to, because I have been there. That's something.

2 comments:

Tom said...

Sorry kiddo. There doesn't seem to be a pattern to when it comes and slaps you in the face does it. I mean grief. I thought of that Kevin Prosch song where he describes convulsive weeping as having a rhythm. (but I don't know why I thought of that_ sorry kiddo, its too late

Susan Boone said...

It IS something...and it is terrible and lovely. Thinking of you, my friend. Love love love...