The day after my brother died, I spent the day with my parents. Relatives had gathered at their house, presumably to show their support in the midst of grief. It was so normal, and it wasn’t. We gathered, we talked, we told jokes. No one ever really said or even talked about why we were there. My brother’s death was the elephant in the room. There was a point that I lost it on the inside. I wanted to stand in that crowded room and scream “SHUT UP! Just SHUT UP! This is not normal, this is not okay. Please, please shut up.”
I didn’t do it. Not because I didn’t feel like it, but because it just didn’t seem like the trait of a normal person. Even in my grief, I wanted to appear normal.
Today was another one of those days. I didn’t feel normal on the inside. I was feeling grief, but everyone around me was carrying on as we always have. The kids were laughing and joking and telling me about their day. My husband was making incredibly small talk. All the while, there was an elephant with us. He was around us, there was barely any room to move around him. Every once in a while he would crawl in my lap, lay on my chest and I could. not. breathe.
Even though most people knew he was there, no one wanted to talk about him. Once again I wanted to scream at everyone to shut up. And I can’t. It’s not normal and it’s not right.
Damn elephant. Go away. 😦 Everyone else, please shut up. I don’t feel like playing normal.