If the stages of grief were linear, anger would be considered the second stage.
But instead, grief is inexact and unconventional, coming in waves, and hitting you in random spurts of time. But I think that might be a good thing, because otherwise the weight of any one of them would be soul crushing.
Some see grieving as crying, but rarely do I think people understand the other layers. Tears are easy to see and understand the meaning of. But what about the other stages?
For some I think those other stages can look like avoidance, being distant from people we love or activities we once enjoyed. For others it can be seen in an overindulgence of drinking or smoking. But for me, I noticed it in my actions of violently kicking all of the mushrooms in our grass. (Of course ironically I learned this would cause more to grow in their place.) At the time though, all I could feel were these overwhelmingly conflicting emotions. I was incredibly sad that we’d lost Joe but I was happy for him finally being at peace. I wanted the joy for him to surpass the sadness that I was feeling, but the thought of not having him anymore was devastating.
So as I walked back inside, muddied shoes and all I realized once again that grief can be strange and it doesn’t always show itself in the same way. But it has to come out- trying to stuff it down and avoid it makes it worse later on. But it sure does hurt going through it now.
If anything, I believe that 2020 helped us all see that. And maybe that also means we can better recognize it in other people and be more gracious towards them.
And to those that have lost someone, my heart goes out to you. Know that you are not alone.
With love, kel