Grief can drive you crazy… or at least it feels like it.
Grief can be overwhelming and all consuming.
It can feel like nothing will ever be right again.
When we deal with acute loss, something incomprehensible to us – the first reaction is to deny it. In over 3 years since I lost my husband, I sometimes still don’t believe he is gone. Just the other day I had a vivid dream that had me waking up and reaching for the phone to call him!
That denial often makes us do crazy things.
And it’s ok…
We are human after all. There are limits to what we can deal with.. and sometimes it’s ok to be unhinged. It’s ok to do things that others will not be able to fit in to their frame of reference. It’s your grief, not theirs. And if a bit of crazy helps you feel better, do it I say.
Grief disorients us. It takes normal and makes mincemeat of it. Suddenly something has happened to you where you may not have a precedence – because no matter how much we try, we cannot feel other’s grief with the same intensity they do. Not knowing what to do, or how to deal with a new situation leads to confusion, and anger, and more hurt. And all these mixed feelings need a vent.
There’s no formula to feel better after a loss. To those who say “go somewhere and scream at the top of your lungs and you’ll feel better”, I say fuck off. No one can tell you what would make you feel better. Sure some of us are the screaming kinds, but others can find their release in very random things – it could be a button collection for heavens sake! And that’s ok too. It has to be YOUR way of dealing with the hand life has dealt you.
Even as I write this, years after Gaurav’s passing, a package wrapped in cling foil and newspaper lies in my freezer. It has his blood stained socks… the only thing of his that I got back after that ordeal. I can’t throw them, nor can I wash them… that would be like washing away his last traces. And every time I open the freezer I check on it. Does that make me feel better? I honestly don’t know. But not having them there will definitely make me feel worse. So they stay in their safe place, with strict instructions printed in red lettering “do not touch”.
There are some people who know what that packet contains. And they gave me weird looks initially – after all, who keeps bloodied socks in their refrigerator! Some even ventured opinions about how it’s ‘unhealthy’. But it’s my bit of crazy – and I’m ok with it. It’s something I can manage without overpowering other aspects of my life. And that’s because I’ve made my peace with it – regardless of what other people think.
Don’t let anyone else dictate how to handle your grief.
Don’t go by what’s acceptable and what’s not.
Don’t deny your crazy, embrace it.