Tuesday, October 22, 2013

My old friend

Grief is a strange thing. People speak of getting over it or through it, as if it is something tangible that should be maneuvered around or scaled like a wall. If only.

For me, grief goes along. Or maybe I should say it comes along. Oddly, it travels better than you might think... more so if it is old enough to know how to behave itself, which my grief does. He should- he is 30 years old today. We actually grew up together, I only vaguely remember my life before he arrived.

We have developed some sort of uneasy friendship at this point, or at least a mutual respect. We certainly know more about each other than either of us care to admit. He has learned to do a better job of picking his moments for wanting attention & I have learned the hard way to let him have his time.

Whenever there is reason to meet new grief, as there was a few years ago, my old friend shows up to make the introductions. I angrily told the newcomer that she wasn't welcome here. Not to get comfortable. She refused to leave.

My old grief waited. He stayed a while to see if I would learn to be kind, which I would not. It is easy to find kindness for grief when it shows up so early in your life that you don't know any better- when you set him a place at your imaginary tea parties & play on the tire swing together. It inspires a bit more anger when you are old enough to know better & see the unfairness of it all.

So my old friend waited, even though I refused to give in. Who knows what his intentions were. Maybe he was here to support me. Or maybe misery really does love company.

Either way, he's worn out his welcome this time around & I've asked him to pack his bags.

See you next year, old friend. 

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