How Long is Long Enough?

I do a lot of thinking about a lot of things. One of which is the whole grieving process. Many questions that I may or may not have the answer for. Not sure I need to have the answer for. Not sure there is answer for.

The truth of the matter is that there is no correct answer. No proper way to grieve. No manual that outlines the steps one takes. Everyone grieves differently. Every situation is unique. And this is something I am having a hard time wrapping my head around. Maybe that is the wrong way to put it. I guess it would just be easier if there was a manual one could follow. I like manuals. Not necessarily following them, but at least knowing they are there if I need something to reference.

I have asked myself questions like:

  • What is the proper amount of time to grieve?
  • What is grieving supposed to feel like?
  • How am I supposed to be grieving?
  • Can I be happy while I grieve?

Probably the biggest question that I play over in my head is the first one – how long does one grieve? That’s a tough one for me. Hell, they are all tough, but I guess since this one is time-based it is easier for me to ponder. I have newfound emotions, but those are definitely something you can’t quantify. The way one grieves is very personal, so again this is hard to pin down. But time is something that should be fairly easy to nail down. But is it?

No. Or at least not for me. Its been over a year now, which in some aspects has flown by, while in others it has crawled by. I have been keeping myself busy with this whole new nomadic lifestyle of mine, yet I still allow myself to grieve. In my own way. Which is different than how others grieve. Or so I think. But what do I know? There is no manual, remember?

So I am trying to forget the whole concept of time when it comes to grieving. Stop thinking about how long is long enough. I don’t think that the grieving process will ever end. It will just change. I have seen that already.

It is not that I will ever forget about my wife. What we experienced. What our relationship was like. But I think it will become less painful – less raw – as time passes. I have experienced this change already.

I have a great family. I have great friends. I am gaining new friends as this journey continues. They help me experience life. They have helped me immensely in the past year and they continue to do so.

So how long is long enough? I don’t think that is a question that I should be asking. The answer is right in front of me. The answer is apparent. And it is one that only I can answer. Not that there is an answer. Yeah, it is confusing if you think about it. So I won’t. I will just live. Experience. Laugh. Cry. Be happy. I am happy and that is all that really matters. So I guess I can be happy while I grieve for an undetermined amount of time. Yeah, it’s strange. That is what the manual would say if there was one.

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