The thing about grief…

*Note: this post contains strong language


The thing about grief is…it sucks. It’s like you wake up to a brick wall and everything hurts. And yet, it’s hard to feel anything at all.

I don’t understand why people die. I know with my words that death is a natural part of life. But why should something so natural hurt so much?

Last week I sat in my great-grandma’s funeral. Before that I got the text that said she’d passed. Words that I’ve heard before, words that I know. When my cousin died at 3. A friend from high school in her 20s. My grandma, after a horrific and valiant battle with cancer almost 2 years ago. Many others close to people I care about. And now Nana, a shockingly beautiful and kind woman, a month away from turning 90.

I feel powerless at funerals. Sitting, listening to words about life and death, about Jesus and suffering – while someone I love is right in front of me – in a box. I hate it. I hate having to be present to a reality I don’t understand. I hate not knowing how, or if, life will go on. Because life without someone you love sucks.

I wish that I could have seen my cousin grow up. I with that my friend had lived to know joy, and some kind of peace. I wish that my grandma could have been there at my wedding. I wish that she was still just a little drive away, where I could go and we would watch So You Think You Can Dance with her, and eat, and laugh, and cry. And I wish my Nana, the woman who held me as a child, who let me plant flowers for her in the spring, who gave generously and loved lavishly – wasn’t in a box somewhere.

Sometimes I’m angry, and I just want to yell at everything, to blame what happened because I can’t handle my own feelings.

Fuck cancer. Fuck disease. Fuck car accidents. Fuck old age. Fuck death.

Yes, sometimes I’m angry. But the truth is, more than that, I’m sad. I don’t like how unfair life feels. I don’t like feeling incomplete. I don’t like that grey skies come with sunshine, that life comes with death. I don’t like that emptiness comes with fullness.

And I miss my Nana.


  1. Sigh, you capture the feeling well. I had 7 deaths in 15 months. Started with my mom and ended with my dad last feb. They were young 80. My father-in-law the year before that (he makes 8). It is shocking like a gut punch but to your entire being. Strong language is made for this. Sorry for your loss, feels too light. sorry your world is turned up side down forever and you feel like you have been run over by a truck and that is going to last for some time. But eventually, a year or 5 from now you will figure out how to let it live in you and not suck all the air out of you hour after hour.Yeah, that. I am sorry for that. hug.

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