Monthly Archives: January 2015

Bereavement is the acid. Grief is the rain.

It’s been a while since I wrote anything down.

I’ve been a Dad. Slagged off TopGear.  Burnt some clocks. Had some Lovely Holidays and got though Christmas.  I’ve done some work and have started posting stuff about the kid’s achievements and fairy cakes on Facebook, which is the true measure of a functioning family, right? Fuck, I even went on a date! It all sounds pretty wholesome. Right?

wholesome flotsam jetsam partsome

The Rolling recovery is stalled. Anxiety, depression, anger – they are all here or hereabouts. Today I played the girls audio recordings that Nicky made for them when she was dying. It was the first time they had been played. Tilly is anxious and losing weight and  Betsy is often sullen, so we listened to mum’s protestations of everlasting love together to acknowledge that all our crazy fucked up behaviours can be explained by the events of last year. I’m not sure it helped.

Time to get back on the bike and write. (Forgive me)

So I guess there’s a bit of catching up to do. A few things that I need to clear up and get out of my head. I started writing this blog in part to help me get some perspective on events through the act of writing them down and in part as a document to help others who are dealing with or affected by grief. So. Lessons from the last few months.

  1. Time doesn’t heal. It’s a fucking lie. Healing implies a restoration, a return to a previous state. That is a fanciful pile wishful shite.
  2. We don’t grieve. Grief does us. It will have its way. Whatever strategies we employ, whatever tools we deploy it matters not a jot. It does us. If you do the right thing at the wrong time you’re fucked, the wrong thing at the right time – equally so. Strangely, the wrong thing at the wrong time serves as a useful reminder of the awfulness and brings a moments peace through forgiveness. The right thing at the right time?  It’ll take years ’til my little family finds out if we ever managed that elusive bond. It will have its way.
  3. Grief and bereavement are not the same.  There was a time when I used them interchangeably but they are distinct. Bereavement has its time, Grief is forever. Let me explain. When Nick died we all lost some one and some things:   a friend,  a lover,  a daughter, a mum, a sister, a future, a laugh, a light, a wise counsel, a creative spirit, a pure and gentle soul are a few you’ve mentioned. So, bereavement I believe is the discovery  of what the loss of those things actually means to each of us.   What was it that she gave to me? to us? to you? What do we miss? And, most importantly, what does that feeling of loss tell us about ourselves?  I have been counselled through my bereavement and thus I think it is over, I understand and now face what it is that I and we have lost. I guess you may have already done the same.  It is uncomfortable. But if Bereavement is the acid, Grief is the rain.     Grief is forever.  I understand now that grief for Nicky is intrinsic to the world I inhabit,  and every day for the rest of my life that same spectre will remind me of what is that I and we have lost. It will have its way. Unfortunately, I still don’t think I am a single step closer to learning to live with that understanding.
  4. Except perhaps an acknowledgement that words alone have not been an answer,  so I am embarking on some new action adventures to help us find within us that which is lost.  I’ll keep you informed as we orienteer this strange new landscape.
  5. It takes a long time to get anywhere when you take three steps forward then five steps back.

It’ll be a year since she became ill soon. And then, at the beginning of March on the anniversary of the day she died, we’re going to scatter her remaining ashes in the sea and under a tree. The earth will have travelled around the Sun and Spring will be upon us.  Time for light and reflection. Join us if you like?  Drop me line and I’ll send you the details.