grief comes in waves
I've been touched at the outpouring of support I've received from my friends the past few days. With that comes a lot of comforting words, some good and some bad (karma is not real). While I understand that they all mean well, these words rarely hit the mark. I feel like all my friends are trying to help me patch holes in my sinking boat, but they can only give me sand. No matter how much sand I try to plug into the holes, I can only watch helplessly as it all dissolves in water.
After watching me cry for the umpteenth time, one of my best friends remarked, "it comes in waves, misu." I don't know why, but that's been one of the most comforting and accurate phrases I've heard thus far.
Progress, especially emotional progress, isn't linear. Sometimes I have good days, days that almost make me forget the gaping hole in my heart. It'll be good for a while, and maybe I'll even laugh without restraint, but a few hours later the pain will come back with a vengeance. I'll cry and stay up all night tortured by my thoughts, only to get up and do it all over again.
The phrase I get told most often is "time heals all wounds." Of course I know this to be true, but I'm impatient—I want to feel better now. Knowing that pain and progress come in waves doesn't fix my problems either, but it at least draws my attention to the sheer variety of moods I've experienced recently, from agonizing pain to resigned peace. It reminds me that things have changed quickly before, and gives me hope that they're likely to continue to do the same. Likewise, when I'm feeling better, repeating to myself that progress isn't linear keeps me on my toes, for I know depression is never far.
This all reminds me of something a kind old lady told me many years ago at bridge club when I was in dead last: when you hit rock bottom, the only way to go is up.