This weekend I attended a memorial service at the grief center I used to attend. I found out about this service from my grief counselor - who encouraged me to go if I felt like it was time to say goodbye. Well, I'm not sure if I will ever be ready to completely say goodbye to Chris, but I had been thinking about him and moving on lately so it seemed appropriate. I'm very glad I went.
Many people who attended the service had lost their loved ones in the last 12-15 months. The people they lost were parents, brothers/sisters, sons/daughters, colleagues, best friends, neices/nephews. The way that they all died ran the gamut as well. Some deaths were sudden, others not. But those of us there were all missing these people.
I sat next to a woman who had lost her daughter in the last 6 months. Her pain was palpable. I really wanted to wrap my arms around her and tell her it would get easier. This made me realized how far I have come.
Three years ago - that was me. I didn't know what to do, other than cry and talk. It felt weird laughing or smiling. It was easier to talk to strangers than my friends. I felt overwhelmed by everything and wanting nothing but what I could no longer have. It was a sad and lonely place, even surrounded by my friends and family.
Today - I still miss him. I think about Chris, my heart aches for a bit, and then that moment is over. I'm more at peace with what happened - knowing that it is what it is. And I wanted to give all those other people in that room a little bit of that peace. I wanted to say to them, "You won't forget them, but you will learn how to get through."
Don't get me wrong - I still have issues. But they are baby issues that I now know I can get through.