During the first year after the death of my life mate/soul mate, I often wrote to him in an effort to bridge the gap between us. The only problem was, he never wrote back and told me how he felt about his dying and our separation. Did he feel as broken as I did? Did he feel as if part of him had been amputated? Or was he simply glad to be shucked of his body, and perhaps even of me?
It’s been three years now since the following letter was written. I still don’t understand the purpose of pain, loss, suffering. Still don’t understand the nature of life or death. Still don’t know how energy can have cognizance, if in fact, consciousness survives death. The main difference is that the wound where he was amputated from me has healed. I don’t worry about him — at least not much — but I still miss him and I probably always will. Most of all, I am learning to get on with my life.
Excerpt from Grief: The Great Yearning
Day 165, Dear Jeff,
People keep telling me that you’re in a better place, but that I have to get on with my life because life is a gift. Huh? If you’re in a better place, why aren’t I there? If life is a gift, why was it taken from you?
I still can’t figure out the point of it all. Is there anything universally important? Love, perhaps, but not everyone loves or is loved. Creativity? But not everyone is creative. Truth? But what is truth? If nothing is universally important, does anything matter? You’re probably tired of this constant questioning, but your death has posed such a conundrum for me that I’m totally lost. I need to find the bedrock of life, a foundation on which to rebuild my life.
I had no idea I had all these tears in me. The drops are huge, like a badly dripping faucet. I am still stunned by the depth and breadth of my grief. I grieve for the good times and the bad. I grieve for what I got from our relationship and what I didn’t. I grieve for me, what I’ve lost, and what I’ll never have. I grieve for you and all you lost, all you never had, all you never will have. I grieve for that young man, that radiant man I met so many years ago because I know the end of his story. And I grieve for the man whose life was cut short.
It can’t be normal, this protracted grief, but people in the grief business keep assuring me I’m doing well.
I hope you’re doing well, too. I love you. I always will.
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Pat Bertram is the author of the suspense novels Light Bringer, More Deaths Than One, A Spark of Heavenly Fire, and Daughter Am I. Bertram is also the author of Grief: The Great Yearning, “an exquisite book, wrenching to read, and at the same time full of profound truths.” Connect with Pat on Google+. Like Pat on Facebook.