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Thoughts on religion, politics, life and death. And other banned topics.

A Lack of Grief


My mom died on April 2nd of last year. Before she died, I used to wonder how I would react to news of her death. I never thought I would have the deep and terrible sadness that I’ve seen in some people. I’m just not like that. But I did imagine missing her and grieving in my own way. Instead, I’ve hardly grieved at all.

I shed a few tears at her bedside when she was dying. I even got dewy-eyed at her funeral. But it was hard to be really sad knowing that she herself was ready to go and even looking forward to it. She was the one who insisted on not being kept artificially alive, who told the doctors to disconnect the machines that could only prolong her death rather than bring healing or hope. She was the one who welcomed death.

What sadness I did feel seemed more like self-pity.

Of course, I miss her. I always enjoyed talking with her, although our conversations had become less and less frequent. In recent years we were not close, not because of any rift between us but because I lived 9 hours away and had a family of my own who needed me more. I have grieved less than I thought I would. I don’t know what to make of it. Perhaps I really am Mr. Spock.


2 responses to “A Lack of Grief”

  1. You’re not Mr. Spock. True, you’re not one to embrace melodrama, which trait I have always viewed a strength in you. I can’t count the times I’ve stopped myself, in conversations with Amy, from saying something like “We should ask Mama, I bet she’d know.” Then I remember she’s gone from us, and I rediscover grief: that odd companion standing silently in place of the departed, saying nothing, expecting nothing, yet quietly breaking our hearts all the same, and with time, helping to heal as well. See what I mean about melodrama? You suffer, not the lack of grief, but the advantage of grief held and gentled by a conscience free of the twin barbed chains of regret and remorse. Oops, there I go again.

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