The sun will rise even when you think that life is gloomy and the future looks bleak. The sun shines in such a bleak contrast to how you feel inside. It’s an anomaly.
Family members are rousing from sleep. All over the floor, there are mattresses and pillows strewn about. I didn’t even notice that the night before. Everyone is rushing to get ready. No one really talks to me. They don’t know what to say. They are afraid I will break down and cry. I look for my black skirt and black blouse. It’s going to be a long day. Everyone is tiptoeing around me. I feel a loneliness that pervades into my bones. My pride keeps me from showing anything.
At the wake, so many people are already there. I get the feeling that people don’t want to make eye contact with me. I understand. I’m glad for it. I can’t engage in any emotional dialogue, not now anyway. People are whispering. I can see them huddled together. I look around at the family and friends and strangers. In this huge crowd, I feel so alone. Some smile at me. Some just stand by. It’s never ending. The steady streams of people are here to say a final goodbye to DC.
The church was filled to capacity, with people standing outside. I had not anticipated such a turnout.
I notice the couples. It hits me that I am no longer part of a couple. I see the old couples. I know they think it will be their time soon. I see the young couples. I know they think it could have happened to them.
The young ones feel for me. They cannot imagine what it would be like to be in my shoes.
In a strange way, I felt that the untimely death of one so young made a great impact on many of those who were there. This death touched them in a very personal way. DC was only 33 years old. If anybody took life for granted, then this was an instant wake-up call.
You know, I’d like to believe that DCs death made a difference in the lives of many people that day. Couples got a preview of what it meant to lose a loved one. If only one person walked away that day with a renewed sense of loving and living and giving, then DC did not die in vain. This thought gave me strength and comfort. His life or his death had a purpose. Did I welcome this? No, of course I didn’t. But did it change me? Yes, for sure it did.
The only explanation I can give about how I made it through those very difficult moments is my faith in God. I really did feel Him hold me in the palm of His Hands. It’s something I know is real because I lived it.
People judged me for smiling and for moving on. One day, I asked Soo, a dear friend of mine if she thought it odd that I seemed to be okay. She gave me the best reply I could ever hope to have. She said that this was how she preferred me to be because the other alternative would be too hard for her to bear. This is the true hallmark of a great friend. I have been blessed by so many. I thank my God for all those who helped me along the way.
My ability to wake up each day and carry on was probably just a stage of my grief. Three months after DC died, I was in church one evening. I’m sitting in front. I’m alone. I feel a wave of pain. I begin to cry. Uncontrollably. Unexplainably. Nothing triggered the tears. It just happened.
More to come.....