It seems so damn pathetic that after all the trauma of your dying, all the grief, all I’ve done in the past fourteen-and-a-half months, all the striving to fill my life with newness, I’m still basically the same I was before you died. I tried to explain this to my grief group today when they were talking about the changes that a death brings, but after I spoke, they backtracked and said that death brought changes to our lives, not us. That we didn’t change. Shouldn’t we? More specifically, shouldn’t I? After all I’ve gone through, how can I still be so much the same?
They talked about the importance of hope at the meeting, too. For all these months, I have had hope. Hope for a new direction in life, hope for success, hope for some sort of personal growth (and I don’t mean a tumor). But now it seems as if all my hopes have died stillborn.
If my continued survival isn’t about hope, if it’s causing me more pain than happiness, what’s the point? I’m curious how this hand will play out, and that’s what’s keeping me going. Maybe it’s enough, particularly since I think people are wrong about needing hope. It’s easier (and less hurtful) to live without hope. So many of my dreams never came to fruition. So much of my grief was about hopes that were never fulfilled. Wouldn’t it have been better if I hadn’t hoped for anything in the first place? Sometimes I wonder if what I miss is what I never had. It’s just too damn sad — you, me.
Pat Bertram is the author of the suspense novels Unfinished, Madame ZeeZee’s Nightmare, 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.