|Me and my little brother with grandpa.|
I had a post mostly fleshed out that I intended to finish this weekend to post today. But Saturday morning, I received some sad news, and just haven't had the energy for blogging the usual. On Friday night, my grandpa was finally released from Alzheimer's grip into eternity.
So today I need to talk about grief, spirituality, and empathy. I've struggled with grief in the past- it's something I've tended to have to deal with on my own, and so I'm still not quite sure how to grieve. I end up spending time being sad, and I wonder if that's effective.
So here's what I'm feeling, right now. I am sad that my grandpa has passed away. I am sad for my dad that neither of his parents are alive anymore. I'm sad for what my aunt Becky must have gone through as grandpa's final caretaker. I'm also sad that I did not get to know my grandpa as well as I would have liked, and that Alzheimer's took my true grandpa years ago.
Spiritually, I know that my grandpa is in a much better place. He and my grandma were church-going, God-fearing folk, and I am at peace knowing that they had that faith to rely on. I also believe that grandpa is reunited with my grandma in Heaven, whatever that may mean (not so sure it's a place, perhaps is more of a plane). And there's a part of me that feels relief for my grandma, knowing that she is reunited with her true love once again.
|This is what love looks like.|
If there's anything I know, it's that grandma and grandpa were full of love. Not all the time- they're regular people with their quirks and quarrels. But they both had a twinkle in their eyes- they loved each other, loved their kids, and loved their grandkids. They loved to laugh. I'm thankful that the memories I hang onto of the both of them are of their smiles and their laughter.
As I process my grief, I also consider empathy. Sometimes I've felt that some people in my life haven't cared about my grief- like the person (or dog, let's be honest- I was heartbroken when my sister's dog passed away last year, far too soon) wasn't a close enough relative for my grief to be acknowledged. Or perhaps it's because they did not have a good relationship with that relation of theirs, so they cannot empathize with my grief. Which makes me wonder- isn't empathy about thinking what the other person must feel in a situation, not how you would feel in a situation?
I'm sure I'm just exaggerating and feeling a little sensitive. I was a bit stunned to hear the news, despite knowing grandpa had recently taken a turn for the worse. But you guys, loss sucks. So I'm just trying to figure this one out.
How do you grieve? How do you deal with someone you know is grieving? Please let me know in the comments.