Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Differences in Grieving

Grief is an interesting thing. It is different for everyone and I was surprised at how differently Paul and I handled our grief.

I needed to talk to someone, Sara, my mom, Sherri, a kind sister from church and of course Paul. He just wanted to talk to me and only when he was ready.

I found comfort and solace when I would write down my feelings and was able to express what I was going through. Paul found peace when he was alone with his thoughts at a lake or walking through a forest; or with headphones on, the rest of the world blocked out, listening to music.

I needed to cry and get my feelings out; he needed to be occupied with a project or sports or work.

Even now, 15 years later, I want to watch videos and look at pictures of our dear boy; it makes Paul too sad, in fact, I have to warn him about these posts. On the other hand, I stay away from the cemetery. I hate it. If I never went back there again I'd be fine. Paul finds comfort and peace being in that green place, near the grave site. Cleaning the headstone and taking care of it, leaving a pinwheel or flowers makes him feel good.

Although neither of us were prepared, I don't know how you can be for something like this, we have tried to be patient with each other as we each slogged our way though the grieving process and beyond. We have tried to do whatever we could to comfort the other. He definitely didn't want to go to counseling but he knew it would help me and he was there with me every minute. I made sure he had time alone and bought him new CD's to listen to.

During a time of extreme selfishness, we were somehow able to be extremely unselfish and we came out stronger in the end. Making it through the grieving process with our marriage intact is absolutely the greatest blessing of my life.