Feel regret or sadness about (the loss or disappearance of something).
I feel like ‘the disappearance of something’ accurately describes what grief can feel like. One day they’re there, the next, they’re gone. And it doesn’t feel real. Especially if you didn’t see the moment where your loved one passed away. For me it was a phone call from mum delivering the horrible news whilst I was racing to the hospital with my sister.
But what if a person’s death could have been prevented? Then how are you supposed to feel? How are you supposed to move on when you are constantly thinking, if only. If only they hadn’t given my dad infected blood. If only they’d not been cowards and told him before it was too late. If only he’d got that liver transplant in time.
Well, the thing is, thinking like this, though very normal – really holds you back from moving on in any way. And you know what else leaves you in a sad pool of grief that drowns you on a daily basis? The anger. The anger the people who let it happen.
Even 14 years on, this pain is still with me. The anger particularly is buried deep down inside me. Because I know if I really let it surface I’m going to unleash a whole lotta negative energy and anger towards a crappy government who failed its people. It took me until earlier this year to really write down my feelings about the nature of my father’s death (read about it in depth here).
To this day I can talk about the loss of my father. I can cherish his memory and remember the good times. But what I can’t do is discuss the infected bloody scandal, because the resentment and pain over it is still too raw.
Lately, as my grief has evolved I’ve been taking some time to consider, just how do you mourn someone when their death was completely unnecessary? Each and every loss we experience is awful, there’s no denying that. It’s just that his death makes me feel so bitter, and it has lead to some consequences in my daily life.
I find it hard to trust professionals, or anybody really. Because how can I trust people when they let my father down so badly? It’s left me with huge trust issues and a large dose of health anxiety. But you have to find a way to cope, to ease the pain and calm the fury. Because being miserable sucks, and although sometimes life is very cruel – some things just happen. They’re shit, but they happen and we somehow have to find a way to carry on.
We may have mental battle wounds and scars from a loss that’s so hard to accept, but in time we need to find some sort of inner peace. If I’m being honest I’ve not found mine. The infected blood inquiry will be going on for the next few years. Maybe once they reach a conclusion and hopefully offer some sort of justice, I’ll be able to fully let go of the darkest part of my grief.
But until then I need to continue to live my life and grow with my grief in a positive and constructive way. Wish me luck!
And on a lighter note, how funny looking was I when I was a bubba?! lol those enormous ears! Hadn’t quite grown into them yet had I?