The Void Of Grief Remains, No Matter How Much Time Passes

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“My dad couldn’t give me away at my wedding. Five years, no calls. I bought my first house, landed my first big writing job, reveled in a career I could brag about. Mom of the year in the early ones. I went through life and Dad was not there. What they don’t tell you about grief, with as much as it hurts, is how you’re supposed to deal with all that anger in the void.

How to not take it personally when the greatest love of your life isn’t there to live it with you. All those missed moments your brain doesn’t know how to translate, the constant rewiring. Each time you had success and no one to turn to with it. The almost cries morphed into laughs because you’d rather hide it than face the truth.

The truth is that he’s gone. I accept that.

father with his children in a kiddie pool holding onto his daughter and looking towards his son
Courtesy of Wallflower Writing

But the void? It’s the void that makes me mad. No matter how much time passes, the bigger that void becomes. With time comes a greater disparity in hearing his voice and barely remembering it anymore. The idea that he looks just the same as when he left me, but I barely recognize myself. It’s not just losing the one you loved. It’s having lost the one who knew the way to love you back.

Sometimes it’s just plain madness. And even though grief hurts, it’s okay too if sometimes it just makes you feel mad – mad with God, ourselves, or the one who left us behind. It’s been five years since he died. Five years since, ‘I love you Katie Boo!’ Five years since I looked into the eyes of a man who looked like me, whose freckles matched mine. Funny how a freckle can make you feel so mad.

‘This is a part of the process,’ they say at first. You learn, ultimately, grief is a beast of a machine, and this is an ongoing process. Five years later and I can say it’s okay to be mad. To be sad, to turn inward, to bare your grief out loud, or only sometimes. It could take five years of a deepening void to figure out how mad you are, to learn there is no linear way to grieve, and no end in sight. There is only you and how you feel, and how you feel matters, no matter how many years have passed.

Five years down, a lifetime to go, and I know I can’t possibly be in it alone.”

daughter poses with her father, she has her arms wrapped around him, he has his arm wrapped around her back
Courtesy of Wallflower Writing

This story was submitted to Love What Matters  by Wallflower Writing at Detroit Moms. You can follow her journey on Instagram. Submit your own story here.

Read more from Wallflower Writing here:

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‘Our new normal needs adjusting. Extend your arm; we cannot continue to settle for convenience.’: Woman urges ‘be the change you wish to see in the world’

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