The news of another’s loss, prompts the grief all over again, ripping open the wound. Remembering what the deep trenches of grief feel like, my heart aches for those living in that space right now.
The constant fight between being in the present and wanting to dive into the past to soak it all in and remember every detail. So many emotions flood through your mind. Bouncing back and forth between thankfulness, sadness, regret, anxiety, and love like a pinball machine. Grateful for those who are reaching out yet overwhelmed with the responses and duties that must get done.
The arrangements to be made.
The people to notify.
The acknowledgements to those who took the effort to assist or show up.
The incomprehensible energy it takes to bear your face to the world.
The gifts and food and flowers that fill the kitchen, ride the fine line between a blessing and a burden. Thankful for not having to shop or prepare meals yet overwhelmed with the vast amount and what to do with it all.
So stunned by what has occurred and equally shocked by the outpouring of support, that you become immobile. Burying as much down deep as you can and still unable to contain it all as it seeps through your eyes every hour of the day without warning.
The deep trenches of grief are not confined to the week of the death. You don’t just crawl out the day after the burial, or the day you go back to work. You dwell in this space for weeks, sometimes months, occasionally seeing the light of day through others. Carefully navigating the trenches, you learn to avoid the sinkholes that suck you way under to the dark space. Gradually finding your footing, you slowly climb out of the trenches using others who have been down this road as stepping stones to help you find your way out. You constantly ride the balance between participating in real life and finding a dark corner to sink into, to be alone.
Slowly the trenches of grief dry out. They become less muddy, the ruts become more familiar to walk on. You find solid footing and are able to feel the sunshine. You begin to let others back into your life and can see a greater purpose beyond your pain. It still hurts and the grief can hurl you back into that space in a moment’s notice, but you no longer live down in the trenches. You live in the daylight. You recognize that space was not your forever home, even though it felt like it in the moment. You arise from the depth of the trenches of grief as a strong hope for others just arriving to that space.
Hi! I'm Jessy, one of the co-owners of Purpose + Grit and co-authors of the book Faith Over Fear: Walking Angie Home. My husband Kyle and I live in an old general store, converted to residence, with our three kids, Ally, Charley and Rad and our German Shephard, Roxy. You will usually find me with paint on my clothes creating my next artwork piece.