Grief can feel like a homesickness. I find myself yearning to go home, to be in my house where my mom used to live, to hear her laugh and be with her again. Then I am once again reminded that even if I could get home in that very moment, the things that I yearn for are no longer there. You can never get back to the place where your loved one was.
Living away from my hometown, it’s often very difficult to be at home again. Seeing the old familiar faces, most of whom last saw me at her wake. I have only had the opportunity to visit her grave once. I think if I still lived in my hometown, I would find these things comforting – our house, the people who knew her, etc. – but being separated from all of these things, and then immersed in it all at once is like throwing a bucket of cold water on your face. It takes me a moment to catch my breath and get adjusted.
I began writing in a journal a few weeks before my mom passed away, to help me cope with the numerous emotions that I was feeling. I also kept cards and poems that my friends and family sent after she had passed. Their beautiful words were so appreciated, and I bring them out every now and then. One of my favorite poems a friend passed along to me, and it means more to me now than it did when I first received it. I wanted to share it today:
Love sorrow. She is yours now, and you must take care of what has been given. Brush her hair, help her into her little coat, hold her hand, especially when crossing a street. For, think,
what if you should lose her? Then you would be sorrow yourself; her drawn face, her sleeplessness would be yours. Take care, touch her forehead that she feel herself not so
utterly alone. And smile, that she does not altogether forget the world before the lesson. Have patience in abundance. And do not ever lie or ever leave her even for a moment
by herself, which is to say, possibly, again, abandoned. She is strange, mute, difficult, sometimes unmanageable but, remember, she is a child. And amazing things can happen. And you may see,
as the two of you go walking together in the morning light, how little by little she relaxes; she looks about her; she begins to grow.