Grief, and the Process of Totally Not Dealing With It
According to Elizabeth Kübler-Ross, there are five stages of grief, which may happen in any order:
- Denial: I’m fine. Whatever. This isn’t even happening.
- Anger: This is bullshit, I want to blame somebody or something and rage against it.
- Bargaining: pretty self-explanatory.
- Depression: Fuck it, I give up.
- Acceptance: Okay, fine, I’m mortal and so are my friends. I get it.
Currently, my five stages of grief seem to be:
- Acceptance: This is going to happen, and it hurts.
- Stowing: This isn’t about me. Time to man up, pack it up and deal with it until I know my friends and family have everything they need from me. Totally not an excuse for not dealing. Really. Stop looking at me like that.
- Drinking: Is that an open wound? Let’s treat it with alcohol. Shut up, it’s helping.
- Picking Fights: What do you mean I didn’t stow that grief deep enough?
- Going Fetal: This is potentially a lengthy process that may or may not involve steps 3&4.
Last night, after spending time with some of the family I shared with Donovan, I managed to dive head first into a series of miscommunications, pick a fight with and thoroughly upset the woman I’ve been seeing (Henceforth known as “C.”, because that shit’s too long to type every time), and to start crying in a moderately busy bar. Then, feeling absolutely awful about picking the fight and feeling absolutely awful about crying in public, I spent the rest of the night berating myself for letting my grief and anger bubble over onto these two women (her friend from work was also there, so I am sure I made the best first impression, EVAR) while trying desperately not to start crying again (floodgates were showing signs of opening at any moment) and wanting a do-over on everything.
The cab ride home was a somber affair, as I could not seem to stop the tears from falling but was still trying desperately to maintain some semblance of control (LOLZ). When we finally got home and went to bed, C. fell asleep instantly (she does this—to a ridiculous insomniac like me, this is nothing short of a superpower and I am phenomenally jealous), and the floodgates opened. I don’t remember stopping crying before I passed out, so I think it’s fair to say I actually cried myself to sleep, which I haven’t done since I was a kid.
I woke up this morning feeling entirely wrung out, still kicking myself over last night’s critical fumbles, not entirely understanding why C. even wanted to come home with me after my utterly dickish behavior and trying to sort out everything I was feeling. When one of her alarms went off and it was Mumford & Sons, “Little Lion Man” (a song that I associate almost entirely with Donovan), I discovered that I really was wrung out: I couldn’t cry any more. I did let out a rather pathetic whimper, though.
I have been trying to figure out what last night accomplished, apart from instilling in me the need for Gatorade and the desire to apologize to C. and her friend profusely and repeatedly. Perhaps the realization that my stages of grief, as they currently are, are not working for me or for the people around me. Perhaps the realization that dealing with my shit is better for me, which is better for everybody. Perhaps it was a giant slap upside the head alerting me that maybe, just maybe, I need to be more aware of what is going on internally. Perhaps it was all those things.
Oh, and a blog post that is way too long.
This entry was posted on May 4, 2012 by whiskeypants. It was filed under Dating, Observations, Relationships and was tagged with communication, dating, five stages of grief, friends, friendship, grief, grieving, Love, manners, mourning, relationships, social awkwardness, stages of grief, whiskey, women.