After my niece passed away I always knew that there would be some hard days in me and my family’s future, but what I never knew is how hard it would be to only talk to a select few about it.
I guess I should explain. After Evelyn died I dreaded going to do the activities I had pre-planned, like going to the hair salon, because I feared the inevitable conversation of telling them of my loss. However, once I was at the salon, the conversation I fretted about never came up. The odd thing was that even as the wave of relief came over me, I found it hard not to want to talk about it.
That’s the funny thing about grief; you wind up with only a few people you can actually talk to about it because bringing it up to people who weren’t involved in it makes it seem like you’re putting a burden on them that they shouldn’t have to bear. The way I see it, I could have brought it up and we could have had a conversation about it, but since she doesn’t know my family or my sister the only thing she could have said was that she was so sorry for my loss and maybe shared with me a story of someone she knew who passed away and that would have been that. Neither one of us would have left feeling any better (although I looked better and felt about 100x better after having a few hours to relax while getting pampered).
I even find myself doing this when I’m running errands. For example: the other day I went to Target to get toys to donate to Toys for Tots in memory of Evelyn. Most of my time was spent wandering around the store prepping what to say in case the lady who was ringing me up asked who all the toys were for. In turn I wound up thinking about it more often, and then I want to talk about it more but in reality there’s nothing to say other than I thought about my niece today.
I guess what it all boils down to is finding those few people who you can talk to and make sure you’re getting your feelings out. Eventually it all gets easier, but in the meantime having friends and family who will listen to your stories really does make all the difference.