It’s been six months since my sister died.
I can’t quite believe it. Time moves differently when it concerns the death of someone you love, because you don’t want it to move at all – dragging your feet as it forces you along.
I wasn’t sure what to write today but wanted to write anyway, so I went back to The Five Stages of Grief website to see if that sparked anything. At first, it didn’t. I’ve already written about denial and the other stages just don’t seem to be anything that I’ve gone through in the past months. Plus, the descriptions of the stages seem incredibly corny – annoyingly so – it’s worded as if talking to a baby. So, instead of reading those very thoroughly, I just focused on the words:
Denial. Anger. Bargaining. Depression. Acceptance.
And realized, I’ve dealt with all of them. Not in the last six months but in the last seventeen years. Ever since she was diagnosed with Lupus, I’ve stumbled upon some form of each of these “stages.” Any unwanted drastic change in someone’s life is bound to cause any one or all of these. In my case, it was this damn disease. Did I go through the stages in order? Eh…not really. Do I think the corny definitions are true? Maybe superficially, but we all grieve differently – so while I can define the stages for me – I’m guessing they weren’t the same for you.
Where does that put me now, then? I’m not sure.
I push it away. I avoid it. I hold my breath til the moment passes. I ignore it at all cost. Except for days like today where thinking about her is entirely unavoidable. Where I can’t help but look at the million of pictures of her on my computer or listen to a voicemail that I, luckily, never deleted. And it’s still all there…the mixed emotions, the guilt, the grief. I found it oddly comforting. To cry. To feel it all, even if I only let myself for a few moments. I imagine it will be like an old friend after a while. One that comes to visit unexpectedly. One that I can visit at a moment’s notice. Like today. When I can’t believe she’s been gone so long.