Jasminflower - Redondo Beach, California

The Journey of Grief


It has been said that when a parent dies, the sky falls down. My sky fell down six months ago today: January 25, 2016. Losing my mom has been the deepest kind of pain I have ever felt. It was as if my heart fell out of my chest and shattered into a million pieces. Even though I knew for two and half years since her diagnosis that the day would come. Even though I knew as she laid in a hospital bed that she was dying. It still didn't matter because once she died, I had to live in the world without her and that was my biggest fear. I never wanted a world that looked like that. So my biggest fear came true. The tears after a death like that come from the darkest parts of your heart because you mourn for the loss of the person and then you mourn for the loss of you. You will never be the same and your mortality is unmistakably staring you in the face.

It's like waking up amputated. Like you woke up one day without the part of you that you had your whole life to walk with or write with. It's readjustment, it's tears, more tears, it's fighting to get up everyday and live your life normally when your life is not normal anymore. It's recognizing the kindness and compassion of people who literally carried you for months and letting go of those who no longer fit in your new-not-so-normal life. It's trying to stop yourself from always living in sorrow and to not drown in that huge gaping hole you walk around with. Some days it is just about being able to breathe. Some days it is wondering how you will ever leave the valley of grief. Some days it is ok. Grief is maddening, strange, and always changing. It is truly your only companion after death because this journey is yours and yours alone.

Today, it's been six months and it feels like a lifetime has passed since I went through the worst period of darkness in my life and yet, it feels like yesterday because the memories of her: her smell, her voice, our times together and the things she would say, are stronger than ever.

I read this amazing quote from Desmond Tutu: "hope is being able to see that there is light despite all the darkness." My mom very much shared my strong belief in a higher power. My higher power has given me hope to see light amidst all the darkness. I have been on a journey of healing for six months that has been filled with so many signs, miracles and love ,even with this scarred bandaged heart that I have brought back together. From the moment my mom died, one message kept coming up: that life is a circle that has no beginning and no end. That the circle of life always begins again.

Thank you to my incredible family and friends, the entire Rinna family, and Dennis. I wish I could give back to each and every one of you for what you have done for me.

Thank you to my dad for being an adventurous 75-year old full of life that is still with me.

Thank you to my sisters who I am bonded to in life and forever in a way that is deeper than I could have ever imagined.

Thank you to my husband who has been a rock and literally faced the most difficult times in our marriage with humor, strength and positivity.

Thank you to my mom for staying with me and giving me signs always to let me know you are very much still there , always protecting me, and helping me stand up in the mud of life.

After my mom died, my friend Eric told me something that has always stayed with me. The hole in your heart never goes away, your heart gets bigger to love more so the hole feels smaller as your heart expands. Nothing could be more true.

I love you and miss you to the moon, Mom.

Category: URtheStory // Family

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