Saturday, December 22, 2012

The Ghosts We Knew ~ Absorbing Tragedy and Finding Gratitude

I'm not talking about it much. I don't even think I'm actively thinking about it much, but I know I'm more profoundly effected by last Friday's CT tragedy than I'm even letting myself understand.

I sat down to do a holiday post - some funny anecdotes, cute things the kids have said, how Finn still fervently believes and I think Greta knows-but-doesn't-want-to-know.

I couldn't write a word. My head was full of all those people facing this season without their kids.

And I felt scared right down to my bones.

I'm personalizing it a little bit, I can't help it.  Losing my Dad last year brings up all sorts of stuff when sudden deaths hit (not to say this is the same - it isn't - but it's one of the "cage rattling" experiences where you realize life turns on a dime).

This time last year I had just started chemo and radiation and I have so much to be grateful for. SO MUCH.

But still, those families in CT won't leave my mind. I'm praying a lot; even when I don't even realize it.

So I didn't set out to do a "sad" post about loss. It just came.  Anyone who has ever lost a loved one knows what I mean about holidays being a little harder. I start imagining the parents of those children and my brain kind of shuts down - SLAM - and then on some odd level I feel unworthy of happiness. Even though I know that's selfish fear talking, I can't help it.

I'm holding my kids extra tight, praying extra hard, wishing I could have assurances that none of us are ever granted.

So tonight I leave you with this song my Mumford & Sons (please listen - it's gorgeous - but you may want a tissue handy) called "The Ghosts We Knew".  Here are the lyrics, and then down below is a widget where you can listen to them as you read.  Send some prayers to those suffering this year. Wallow in all you have, and hug your loved ones tight.

The Ghosts We Knew, by Mumford & Sons:

You saw my pain, washed out in the rain
Broken glass, saw the blood run from my veins
But you saw no fault no cracks in my heart
And you knelt beside my hope torn apart
But the ghosts that we knew will flicker from view
And we'll live a long life
So give me hope in the darkness that I will see the light
Cause oh they gave me such a fright
But I will hold as long as you like
Just promise me we'll be alright

So lead me back
Turn south from that place
And close my eyes to my recent disgrace
Cause you know my call
And we'll share my all
And our children come, they will hear me roar
So give me hope in the darkness that I will see the light
Cause oh they gave me such a fright
But I will hold as long as you like
Just promise me that we'll be alright

But hold me still bury my heart on the cold
And hold me still bury my heart next to yours

So give me hope in the darkness that I will see the light
Cause oh they gave me such a fright
And I will hold on with all of my might
Just promise me that we'll be alright

But the ghosts that we knew will flicker from view
And we'll live a long life


2 comments:

  1. It IS the same, your dad, these hildren, my husband...
    it is all grief.
    No one's is bigger or worse..different, certainly, but no bigger or worse.
    We are entitled to OUR grief, others tragedies are not our tragedies, tho they may trigger us in unexpected, or very expected ways.
    I cannot imagine the way those parents feel, just as i cannot imagine how much you miss your dad, just as no one can imagine how much I miss my husband. We can try to, but that isn't helpful, because the fact is that the unimaginable will happen to all of us one day.

    The Newtown murders caught us all off guard, shocked us...it is more of a collective loss that we are feeling. But not those parents, they don't care about us, they are sitting in and trying to process their grief. We cannot do that for them, nor should we try. We can listen. we can use our voices and voting rights to help try and keep that from happening over and over again, as it does.

    It is a horrible time of year for this to have happened, but then, when would have been better? My husband died in a January. I have not had a good xmas since. It's ruined for me. Much is. That is MY grief, and when I can express it to those who know me, who will listen, I am relieved a bit.
    I hope writing this helped you Ellie, relieved your grief a bit...
    YOUR grief, as important as anyone else's
    There is no good grief, just the grace to freely express it to people who understand...
    love you
    michele

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    1. Oh, Michele, my friend. Thank you. Your words make so much sense, and they DO bring me comfort. Only someone like yourself who has experienced this kind of loss can explain it in a way that resonates right through my heart. You made me cry, but in the good, cleansing way. I'm so grateful for you and I wish I could give you the biggest hug in the whole world right now. But the best I can do is send it to you over the internet .... can you feel it?

      -xoxo

      -Ellie

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