Sunday, November 17, 2013

Passing Grief

Late last week, I learned a friend had made the choice to take his life and was no longer with us. Besides the sheer shock of loss, many questions flitted through my numbed brain. What did I miss seeing? Could I have helped? What was happening within him, around him, in his world that was so overwhelming that he saw suicide as his only response?

There was, and is, no judgment in any of those questions. No judgment of myself, of others, or of my now-absent friend. There's simply an overwhelming sadness. So many things will remain absent in my life: discussing the book he borrowed from me; talking about his latest trip 'back East'; laughing at other friends and at their jokes; listening to music together; hugging each other in greeting or farewell. My mind's eye still sees him smiling at a friend, laughing at a joke, startling at the picture of a beautiful girl, moving a chair over so I can sit next to him..... I have not yet learned how to let go. It's too soon.

How do you handle grief? How do you, as Camus says, "live to the point of tears"?

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