dear grief – 23

There’s a heavy feeling of being hovered over.
Like an appointment is waiting and I don’t feel I’m ready for it.
There’s sadness brewing,
an overwhelming sense of helplessness,
for the first time in my life,
I’m anxious about death.

Like I’m short-changing myself, my children, my potential.
How does a three year old reconcile with losing a father when he’s ten, sixteen or thirty five?
Will his thirteen year old brother hold his hand, mend his mother’s heart, reassure his angry brother, force himself into a fortress of solitude, but a solace of rectitude?
Why should he have to endure such hardship,
why should his sister have to be given away by him and not me?
Why should he hover over his nine year old brother like a hawk, anticipating his next self loathing moment?

Why should he be forced to name his newborn after me, in memory of me, honouring a cultural tradition that prides itself on who can grieve the hardest.
As if keeping a name alive long enough demonstrates the grandest love.

What I do know is that once you lose someone to death,
they immortalise in waves of grief,
oft returning grief that crashes and dissipates,
yet washes like it was never there.

That’s why I’m addicted to the sea,
I drown in grief daily,
its salt is always on my lips,
always in my eyes.

W.E.

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