You do shit like…No longer leave your phone on silent/ not utilizing the DND feature as a default when going to bed. In case someone needs to reach you. In case, you receive a phone call at 2,3,4am.
Abnormal hours. Abnormal phone calls about the inevitable- Death. It can come to us at any age.
But as time passes…I’d say that range of mid to late 30’s…& the frequency of your parents’ classmates, friends, acquaintances, cousins and their own elder family members…passing. As the conversations increase, you are reminded of your finiteness. & of life being so beautiful and so temporary.
I understand and respect death. & I’m not gonna kid you. I am not a fan of attending funerals (I don’t think anyone is 🥴) but for me, as a kid I was taken to a funeral & witnessed so many intense and inundating emotions…I decided that was the last funeral that I was ever attending. I used to joke that the only funeral I’m attending is my own. That was my attempt as a child at humoring myself and others, as a way to cope.
I was partially serious…& fully traumatized.
Seeing family members who are usually “the strong one” completely breaking down and hearing the various howls. and screaming…someone attempting to cope, but losing hope and completely shutting down. Abandoning reason & attempting to also greet death by refusing to release the casket and trying to get into the ground with the deceased…
I’ve seen grief.
I’ve felt grief (as we all do at some point)
Losing my Grammy was one of thee hardest phone calls I have ever answered. It was the day after Christmas. & I was in a completely different country when it happened. But. The pain and agony in the voice of my Mum when she had to tell me this…over the phone. Hearing the screams of my Aunts & Uncles. My cousins.
The pain didn’t dissipate even though we we’re thousands of miles away. It wasn’t lessened.
The agony. The weeping. The howling…Like a banshee. Like a thief. Stealing joy and sanity.
Damn. I don’t wanna just sit here and cry and type, but that seems to be the case as I’m writing this, right now, in memoriam of my dear friend who just lost her mother a few hours ago.
A phone call. At 4am. This is why I turned off my Do Not Disturb. Mind you, I was in such a deep sleeping mode that I didn’t even hear the phone. But. Once I got up and looked at the hour it occurred, I knew. People don’t call at that hour (at least not my phone) unless something is wrong or someone is gone. After having a conversation with my friend earlier, I knew that it was the latter 😔
Bc I’ve always had a way with words except when it comes to death & grief. Grieving and the comforting of others who are grieving. Because..To me…it’s like, what the fuck do you say? What the fuck can you even say?
None of that shit can miraculously pull a Jesus and bring them back. And there are certain things I’ve learned (because I’ve been reading 📖 on how to help someone experiencing grief or loss) that you absolutely should NOT SAY THESE THINGS:
- “They’re in a better place.”
- “It will get easier.”
- “I know how you feel.”
- “At least you have other children.”
- “You can always have more children.”
- “You can always remarry.”
- “Everything happens for a reason.”
- “At least they lived a long life.”
- “God never gives us more that we can handle.”
- “Don’t cry.”
- “Don’t feel bad.”
- “It could be worse.”
& if the person is religious, use bible verses with care.
Aging. Sooner or later, you will receive those phone calls.
I have a south node in Capricorn plus Sun & Mercury in Aquarius…sooooo…comforting someone in times like these, has never been my strong suit.
So I turned to books + humans; a Pisces & a Cancer woman. Both whom I respect, love and appreciate the hearts they possess.
& with my North Node being in Cancer, I have every cell in my body and every ounce of my spirit leading me and pulling me towards this metamorphosis- for some time. I went from being Saturn ruled; & predominantly emphasizing on pragmatism & providing…to embracing and becoming the nurturer.
The journey of moving towards your North Node says: comfort zones be damned.
& there is nothing comfortable about losing someone. But the humans we are blessed to experience in our lifetimes that we get to call friends, who become family…need us to evolve.
To dig within the deepest parts of ourselves, parts unknown (Anthony Bourdain, you are missed, man ✨) and do your best to hold space for them. Do more than you think you are even capable of, because…they need it. They need you, especially right now.
Presence, even in the time of Covid19. In a time of social distancing protocols. Where hospitals, hospices and funeral homes have lowered capacity…The meaning of Holding space has evolved, just as 2020 has.