“The English social anthropologist Geoffrey Gorer, in his 1965 Death, Grief, and Mourning, had described this rejection of public mourning as a result of the increasing pressure of a new “ethical duty to enjoy oneself,” a novel “imperative to do nothing which might diminish the enjoyment of others.” In both England and the United States, he observed, the contemporary trend was “to treat mourning as morbid self-indulgence, and to give social admiration to the bereaved who hide their grief so fully that no one would guess anything had happened.”
Thank you, Haley’s Mom, for finding words which remind me that as far back as 1965 someone was able to echo why I continue to exist as an alien in society; 50 years later these words still ring true.
I have never counted the actual days before, but it does not seem possible that it has been 550 days since Amy was here. 550 days since my life made sense. 550 days ago, I was relatively happy and content. 550 days ago, I had hopes and dreams.
Today I was calm. One phone call instantly snapped me right back to how fractured my life and family is now. For one minute, I thought I was functioning better. False alarm.
550 days later and I am asking the same question I asked on Day 1? How does one survive the loss of a child? My child? My Amy?
Who am I and what does the world expect from me? My responsibilities to my husband and children remain crystal clear but that does not change what losing Amy has done to me. I feel hollow inside. A shell of who I was? Go ahead and write me off as self-indulgent. Move on to the next griever who hides their sorrow much better than I am able to do 550 days later.
Always remembering Amy.