What do I want to let go of on this journey?
I don’t really want to think of it as a journey. Although, I guess I do recognize that that’s what it is, what all of life is, in a sense.
A lot of talk about grief – grief journeys – makes me mad. I used to get updates from a large grief-related organization on Facebook but had to unsubscribe because the relentless pretty pictures with inspirational quotes were making me see red.
I was (am) incapable of recognizing the beauty that is supposed to be more apparent to me since my daughter’s death, the deeper levels of meaning that are ostensibly available to me as a grieving mother. I call bullshit on that.
No doubt, I misunderstand the purpose of those messages; I’m sure the poster is equally angry about the death of his or her child. It is just that I hate anything that smacks of an attempt to prettify what happened to my baby or to make it seem as though her death served some kind of purpose. There was no purpose important enough for her sacrifice. Nothing beautiful in her death. I understand the instinct to try to find meaning, to try to identify some higher purpose or depth of insight. But I can’t accept it for myself. I still maintain that I was a good person before she died; that I was compassionate and empathic and gentle; in fact, I think I was more compassionate, more empathic, certainly more gentle, before the rage and fear associated with her death descended on me. I was always a seeker of beauty. I was always grateful for what I had; far more grateful before what I had included daughter death – to borrow Angie’s phrase – and mother grief. So, yeah, I call bullshit on all those inspirational quotes and pretty pictures.
But, you know, it seems like a stupid thing to get so upset about. So maybe what I want release from is my derision and instinctive recoil from such images and ideas.
It might be nice to be less of a grief curmudgeon.