It is almost 4 months.
The entire world thinks I should be "better" by now.
Thank God for Grief Groups. I go to 3 of them. And in them, I find other people who are in the same boat. It is NOT unusual to not be any better at this point. In fact, it is extemely unusual to be "better" at this point.
Do Grief Groups help?
Well, not in the sense of making things better. For example, I went to Grief Group last night and today I cannot stop crying. So, no, it does not make it better. What it does is allow us to know we are NOT crazy. We are completely normal. We are grieving.
I'll give you an example. In Grief Group, someone can say something like this:
My friend told me I shouldn't jog at night because it's dangerous. I said, "Good, I hope someone is lurking in the bushes to jump out and stab me. That would be wonderful."
In a normal room, everyone would say, NO, what an AWFUL thing to say! You have so much to live for!
In Grief Group, everyone is nodding in agreement.
Yes, we all nodded in agreement.
We do NOT have so much to live for. Our desire to live is gone. Our desire for anything is gone.
If you had asked me, prior to Kirk's death, how I would survive if Kirk died, I would have said, "It would be horrible, but my faith will carry me through." HA!
The only thing my faith is doing is keeping me from driving off a cliff. Because I know neither God nor Kirk would approve.
So, for those of you who have to deal with people like me in real life, first of all, understand they are a MESS. No matter what they look like on the outside, they are DESTROYED on the inside.
They do NOT want to hear anything from you. Really. You cannot make it better. There is NOTHING you can say. What you can do is LISTEN. And shut up. I mean it. Shut up.
"He's in a better place." Do NOT say this.
"He would not want you to be sad." REALLY? If I had died, I'd want him to mourn.
"You're young. You'll meet someone." If you say this, you are the most heartless person around.
"Stop crying. Let's talk about something positive." I will punch you right now.
"You should be over this by now." You are CLUELESS and you need to learn about grief so you can minister effectively to people.
"Let me know if there's anything I can do." Sounds nice, but I will never let you know.
"Call me if you need to talk." Sounds nice. I will NOT call you. I don't have the energy. I do not want to be a burden. You need to call me. And then LISTEN. LISTEN. I want to talk about Kirk. I need to talk about Kirk. LET me cry. LET me talk. Offer a hug and a listening ear.
"I'm coming over and bringing dinner/ice cream/whatever." BINGO! That is the correct answer.
l can't think right now, so you have to take the initiative. You have to decide what you will do and just do it.
I have never asked Bob to mow my grass. But he and his son have kept my many acres of grass mowed all summer. He never asked me what needed to be done. He just shows up and mows. One time he even brought a friend who brought HIS mower and they mowed together so they could get it done faster before it rained. I had never met the friend before. God has some amazing people out there.
You can be one of those amazing people. I am not talking about me. You do not know me personally. You cannot bring dinner to my house.
But when someone in your congregation, your neighborhood, your family, becomes a widow, or a widower, or loses someone else... just remember what I've said.
I am in a tunnel. There is no light at the end of the tunnel. I do not need you to tell me there is a light at the end of the tunnel. I need you to come sit with me in this dark tunnel.