Updated: Dec 31, 2022
I’ve just heard the news I have lost another friend.
She is my twentieth bereavement since the pandemic began.
How do we cope with loss on this level? For me, it is about feeling. About choosing to feel my emotions and welcome all of the discomfort and pain and loss home, not to push it away. To stand rooted as it enters my rib cage and rattled my foundations and scratches at my soul. Because this is love. This unbearable ache of all that should have been and all that won’t be and all the doubles over stomach clenching grief that turns us inside out arrives to show us that even here: love is still present. Love is allowed.
That the pain is caused by the vacuum not by the love itself. And that when I remember not to resist. When I welcome all the jagged bits and the aching bits and the whys that come stumbling in, I know I just cracked my heart open a bit wider.
And now I have to learn to love you where you are. Not at the end of the phone. Not on long walks in the countryside. Not by the kettle for just one more cuppa then I really must be going. But here, in grief. Now I get to love you here. And this is how death teaches us all about love.