I once heard grief is like a thumbprint. That no two are alike.
Now, more than ever, I really get that.
Grief is different for everyone.
After losing my mother a few months ago, I began my own roller coaster ride of grief.
Sometimes I felt terribly sad. That she, my one and only mother, had permanently left this world.
I didn’t care that she was almost 92. And had lived a long life. She was still my mother. And she was gone. Forever.
How could that possibly be? It shocked me to my core. And hurt like hell.
Today I took a magical walk with a sea otter.
I was out on the seawall in the a light spring rain thinking about my mother. Contemplating what was going to happen to her.
I’d just visited her a few days prior and knew in my heart she was not long for this world.
My son and I had gone to see her in the care facility she was living. We were shocked by the rapid decline she’d made since our last visit.
Her face looked gaunt and hollow. Her body frail and weak. Her skin ever so pale and delicate. Deep down some part of me knew that she was finally giving up the fight.
When I was growing up my mother often said to me: just be yourself.
But did she really mean it? And why, after so many years, is it still so damn hard to do?
I have zero doubts my parents loved me. Yet sometimes their love felt conditional.
Just be yourself (as long as it’s the version we like).