For the past year or two I have been living with two impending deaths. One was natural, merciful and literal. The other was unnatural, tortured and figurative. Both have both come to pass.
I have been alive long enough to know that there is no way to anticipate or speed the grieving process. There is no way to shed grief but to endure it and to respect the truth of it. I am also aware that the trend these days is to encourage people to move on with their lives, or to otherwise ignore or distract themselves from grief — advice that is often proffered by friends and family who do not want to embrace the totality of loss, or the inevitability of mortality, in their own lives.
As I have watched myself move through this process in two instances, I have noticed that as a writer I do not have the tools to accurately describe what I am thinking and feeling. Were I authoring these events I would struggle greatly to communicate the totality of what I feel as a character. [ Read more ]