Greif is (often but not always) preceded by either shock, or resignation.
When it’s a new grief, a new loss, shock is what paves the way – surprise over losing something precious. Then the implications of the loss begin to set in (and thus the grief).
But when we are mourning something anew, mourning it again, or mourning something similar to what we’ve mourned before, resignation is what announces that grief is on the way. A melancholy sets in. Oh this. Yes. I know this. I know what’s coming and it’s not going to be fun.
We feel a space open up inside us where once something else was. And at first, it’s just an awareness of the emptyness. Oh yes. I no longer have what I once had. I will soon feel something more sharp than emptiness. All the feels are heading my way.
We brace ourselves; resign ourselves; take a deep breath and sink a little deeper down.
Sometimes, if it’s not a new loss or a tragic loss, we can push through the resignation – maybe even delay the sharper sting of grief for a while. But on the 18th of Tammuz, day 2 of our 3 weeks of obligatory mourning, the resignation is as inevitable as the rest of it. Oh yes. These three weeks have begun. And they won’t be the best three weeks. They will be hard and sad and dark weeks. And then they will be over.
Deep breath. Another step down on the intentional spiral toward Sheol. We are not there yet. Not quite in the depths of The Pit. But we sense it on the horrizon. We feel its chill, its darkness, creeping towards us. And we hunch ourselves against the despair we know is soon to envelope us, and sigh. It’s coming. Soon it will be here. The titlewave of grief. And we will ride it and survive it as we have always done.
I feel the heaviness descending.
I can only pray that, like wightlifting, these burdens will bring me a renewed spiritual strength. As I take another step down.