The hole they leave.

Jan 09, 2024

My brother Michael and I were talking this week and realized that we've both been coming to terms with a new piece of grief. For me it's been slow in coming but once I started talking about it, it kind of just settled in my bones in a different way. Like I finally fully understood what I had been feeling for awhile now, I just needed to speak the words to get it.

Grief leaves a hole.

Well now, that's not much of a surprise is it?

Of course grief leaves a hole. We miss that person so much that often it's a physical pain. But this new part is somehow different...

In the early days after Mom's death, my brother and I talked about a possible "gift" would be that maybe we would get to know Dad in a new and different way and we were both hoping for that. (I can see now where some of my anger toward Dad came from in those early days.)

(A quick aside: I've always believed that there are gifts among the trauma if we are willing to be open to them. I get that not everyone believes that.)

I think that I was also thinking that grieving together would help. That he could partially fill the hole that Mom left. But Dad wasn't able to share his own grief or share in ours—so Aunt Katy, Michael and I all worked to help fill that void for each other.

At least we thought we could.

It turns out, no one can fill that hole. Oh sure, friends and family fulfill in their own ways of course!

But it turns out, nothing at all can fill the hole that Mom left. Dammit.

It was shocking. I began feeling all of that, maybe back in September around Mom's birthday, and I think that's when the depression started settling in. I'm back out of depression again (for now?) and I'm thankful for that.

Anyway, I just thought I'd share in case someone else needed to know this too :-)

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