An old, dear friend emailed me today to say his father died yesterday. Yes, our parents are supposed to die before us, but...WHAT?! The intense shock of it. I am still not fully taking it in. And - I don't understand this part - I didn't know what to say. I don't know what to say. I got to meet him, my friend's father, a long time ago but I hadn't seen him recently. We didn't speak about him very much. And yet, I can't imagine my friend without his dad, nor his brothers, his wife and baby daughter, his mom. How can they have suddenly lost such a central person in their lives? I feel the terrible shock of it.
Grief is the tool to help us through these experiences but nobody hands it to us gently. We don't willingly pick it up. We have to fumble around in the dark for it and then, somehow, it whacks us in the back of the head and we are sprawled face down on a cold, hard floor. And that is the starting point.
Sending you heaps and heaps of love, Jon.