It Doesn’t Get Better, Only Less Hard

I slept pretty fitfully last night, and only for a brief few hours. My mind was racing with thoughts of him, and aching for another family, knowing in my bones exactly the agony they are experiencing right now. I want so badly to turn off their pain and to be able to tell them it gets better. But, it doesn’t really get better. You just learn to live, when they didn’t.

Their death becomes like another limb, you grow with your grief, and your grief grows with you. That grief will age as they should have, residing below the surface of your daily activities and experiences. It will be stirred by scents, by sounds, by memories, by words, by holidays, by others joining the ranks in this unchosen “club” that is being a bereaved parent.

No amount of time passing fills the void. You will still feel them in rooms that never held them, still hear the echoes of them in places that never contained their voice. The truth is, you don’t need to know that it gets better. You don’t need to hear that. You need to know that it’s okay to feel the way you feel, that your pain will forever be valid. You need your pain to be acknowledged and shouldered by others. You need to be encouraged to face it so that you can find the tools and courage to cope with it. That is how healing happens.

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