I read something today that reminded me of how variant and deep grief is. I am fully aware that my journey is not the journey of anyone else but myself, and it is a hard thing to be supportive of someone grieving, knowing that. A person in the swell of deep grief often doesn't want to hear things will get better; indeed, they don't believe things will get better, and may not want them to get better, out of fear that if they move forward, they will be leaving their loved one behind, and that is untenable.
The fact is that we never get over anything. We move through it, and it leaves its marks on us on every level. Nobody we love is ever totally gone from us, but in this plane, we make our way through the physical, sensory contact we have with our loved ones in so many ways that the intimacy that we lose is part of the rolling wave that doesn't seem to end. We miss their bodies, their scent, the way they move, the way they hold us. We miss their voices, their songs, their conversation, their whispers. We miss their messages, their handwriting, their words. We miss watching them, hearing them, smelling, tasting, feeling them. Memories are all well and good. Sometimes, if you're lucky, you have a video, or a recording, or a letter, or a worn shirt, or something to cling to, a talisman. But that's all it is.
Part of grief is knowing there will not be new memories or opportunities. That is the thing that someone consoling the grieving must grasp. There is no "better place". There is no "for the best". It is all learning to contain those talismans and memories into something that we know honors what we had. I firmly believe that as long as we have breath, we have hope that what we had is not all we will have, that love will find us, that even orphaned, widowed or childless, we can experience new growth and intimacy; different, but still fulfilling in its own way. I know there are those who don't have that belief, and for them, loss can wash out a piece of them they are unable to replace. It's for them, the people who don't believe there is anything past the dark, that I wish will look deep, and find their own spark, and remember that they are still breathing.