Grieving is hard (the pain, depression, emptiness, anger, PTSD-like flashbacks, etc, etc, etc).

Grieving itself is not hard to do though. In fact, it is easier to do than to intentionally work on correcting or healing those wounds caused by grief or the events leading up to it (damaged relationships, neglected relationships, forming some kind of routine that feels normal, focusing on what you have to feel blessed about rather than the loss, etc, etc, etc).

How is that for a trap? It is the most terrible thing ever and while it is natural and necessary, aspects of it continue to erode and harm. And yet it is easier to succumb to it than it is to fight it.

And I don't buy the talk about not getting through it until you "embrace it" and whatever other fluffy spins people may put on it. I get that it is natural and necessary, but it is just another necessary struggle in an already long list of struggles.

Now only if I could start fighting the fights that I want to fight instead of this one...



This was shaping up to be a hectic and busy day before it started. We have landscapers coming this morning to begin a total re-landscape of our backyard. We are thrilled to have it done, but have just a little reason to be a bit concerned about how smoothly things might go. Susan has a busy day with the girls *and* is scrambling to prepare to leave on a trip with them very early tomorrow morning. I've got too much on my plate and we are in our most critical crunch time of any project. Lauren woke up screaming and cranky. Julia broke down and sobbed because we told her Susan can't sit next to her on the airplane at takeoff (the three of them are flying on a small jet configured with two seats on either side of the aisle). She just sobbed but couldn't articulate what made her upset about that.

So that is how today was shaping up. Then I sat down a little early to work and my Outlook calendar decided it should remind me that it is one week until Nathan's birthday. Like I needed the reminder.



People talk about "the stages of grief". The most well-know model is probably that known as the Kubler-Ross model. I don't actually know too much about the model. I do know that labeling things as "stages" seems to imply an ordered progression through grief. That isn't at all what it is really like, of course. I can identify with some of the things labeled as stages, but there is no progression. And, for me at least, I jump all over the place and revisit many "places" I have already been.

Currently I'm experiencing something that I can only explain as panic attacks. Most of the time there isn't anything specific I'm tense about. I'll just be going about my business and my heart will begin to race, my stomach will turn over like people describe as butterflies and I'll feel something like extreme tension that comes from stress. It is like nerves leading up to public speaking multiplied by 1000. Sometimes it just comes on out of nowhere, but when that is happening I can be sure that uncomfortable work situations or other interactions (with family or otherwise) will set it off. I felt this way for about 2 weeks last month and then it went away. Now it is back. And it sucks. Big time.