Dark Cloud

Sometimes I really hate Onna...

Well, I don't really "hate" her. Hate is a strong word. "Dislike" isn't really correct either. Maybe "annoyed" fits better. And the only time I am annoyed with her is when she insists we go for a walk when all I want to do is sit at home under a dark cloud.

You see I have realized the past few weeks have caught up with me. Since August 30th I've tried to be a positive player in Megan's life. That was my job. To try and add some kind of light to her life, even if it was a sliver of a glimmer. Not sure if I succeeded, but amid the dishes and loaves of bread, I tried to be "up." My heart is broken for my broken-hearted girl and I will do anything I can to help her.

But now that I am home and dismissed for the time being, I find a dark cloud hanging over my head. I keep telling myself Jim was just my son-in-law so I shouldn't be so affected—that belongs to his mother, kids, and wife—but he was part of our family, an important part, and now that part is missing. We all feel it.

I have a list of things I should be doing—clean the garage, spray the weeds with RoundUp, organize the Crippen boys to help me put the backyard to sleep, clean the oven, etc, etc—but I have no desire to do one dang thing around here. Am I lazy? Gosh, I hope not. I think it's just grief. It's weeks late, but I think it finally caught up with me.

Grief is a funny thing. It has hundreds of faces and you are never sure which face it will show you when it's your turn to host it. And as an unwelcome guest, it can also shift from one emotion to another in the blink of an eye, and with no warning. And then there are the triggers. A word. A picture. A sound. One never knows the Thing that will summon sad feelings.

In moments of productiveness I have managed to scratch out a few thank you cards in my less-than-legible handwriting (typing really is best for me), but after all that has been offered me, and all the acts of service that have come my direction, a "thank you" hardly seems adequate. Actually I have yet to find the perfect words to convey my appreciation. If I could put my words into body language, I would be slump-shouldered, with my hands hanging limply and helplessly at my side in complete surrender.

I penned a poem to tuck into thank you cards, and perhaps it will begin to explain—however inadequately—how I've felt:

In the blink of an eye everything slides,
And one simple phone call creates a divide.
The ground is shaken and hot pain prevails,
And needs do arise that tip our heart’s scales.

So in comes the calvary—here come our friends,
And the straight stab of hurt softens and bends.
Love stretches out and gathers the ache,
Holds us together so we crack but don’t break.

Yours are the arms that reached out in love,
To lift and to help like aid from Above.
Though we adjust to our new broken heart,
Your gift has kept us from falling apart.