Friday, May 15, 2020

The Biggest Space

     It feels like the biggest space, that is, what's left behind after a profound loss. My cat Simio died three days ago and the space left behind touches everything. The grief comes in waves, unpredictably, during the many moments in the day he was by my side. (See my poem Simio and Willow)

     Now when I look at my other cat Willow I feel both comfort and sadness. It's okay to feel both things, or many different emotions at the same time. I want to celebrate the joy Simio brought to my life, and the eight years we had together. I want to feel grateful for all the sweet and funny moments we shared. I want to smile about them instead of cry. But grief is part of it all. Sometimes when the sadness washes over me I have to notice the tightening in my stomach, and release it.

     I also want to accept my husband's grief as his own, and that his grief is okay too. My first reaction is to wish he wasn't hurting, or to look to monitor it. This is unhealthy for both of us. I shouldn't complicate his process by making him update me when it happens.

     Feeling things quietly is important, as well as being willing to listen. Take deep breaths of acceptance. Breathe in gratefulness, breathe out grief. Breathe in sweetness and joy, breathe out any regret.

Simio & Willow
In Loving Memory of Simio
March 21, 2012 - May 11, 2020