I have experienced it enough to know when it’s about to happen. Yet despite the recognizable symptoms, I still can’t stop the inevitable. First there is the burning in my nose, followed by the welling of tears in my eyes and then the slow escape and steady roll of those tears from my eyes down my face. In the beginning, it happened all the time. Maybe more times than not. I found it completely paralyzing as if my mind and body were overtaken by grief. As time moved forward the frequency diminished. Yet the feeling, when it comes, is still just as painful.
It’s unpredictable when it will happen. There are the small triggers like a word or a street sign and the big ones like a flash of a memory. Sometimes music alone, without any association to him or us, just sets it off. Oh and we mustn’t forget the places. Simple mention of a place we had been or wanted to go is enough to precipitate it. I’ve had it happen on a long car drive alone or on a distance run. Some days, I wake up and it’s already lurking. The days leading up to big milestones are sure to set it off. And then there is the sound of his name.
I used to fight to hold it back . Maybe subconsciously I believed that would stop the pain. I know better now. In the early days, I thought it was a sign that I was not okay. Maybe it is evidence of a love so deep, lives so intertwined and a happiness that deserves a moment to stop, think, and pay tribute through tears. Although I know I am okay, these pangs of grief serve as proof that I will never be the same as I was when he was here.
Kim Libertini is all too familiar with grief and the Co-Founder of Goodgrief App, the social network for loss available for less than a latte, for download in the App Store, Google Play and www.goodgriefapp.com. You can follow Goodgrief App on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.