Tuesday, September 22, 2009

The only thing I understand about grief is that I don't understand it

One of the things I understand about grief is that I will never fully understand it.
What I mean is, little things felt like a dagger to my heart yesterday -- like seeing a PORTLAND TRAIL BLAZERS media guide in the bookcase.
My uncle, ROGER HOGSTROM, was the biggest Blazers fan I know. He passed away over the weekend.
I feel rather helpless in the wake of his death. My cousin, PATTY, is an only child who feels understandably overwhelmed in the face of the funeral and its arrangements -- anybody know a jazz quartet that can play "SOMEWHERE OVER THE RAINBOW?"
I can't even proof read the obituary. Apparently, the REGISTER-GUARD in EUGENE just gives you a form to fill out, and they do the rest.
I have been able to do one thing for my cousin during this difficult time. She has asked me what to expect from grief, I have been able to share my experiences.
One thing I don't understand about grief is how it continues to dog me, years later (my dad -- Roger's brother GEORGE -- passed away in 1992). I also don't understand how it can make you see the beauty of the present, even as you struggle with the past.
My lasting regret in life is that my dad never met my daughters -- his only grandchildren. It's a regret that threatens to gnaw at me, except...
Except that occasionally I will glimpse KERSTIN or ANNIKA (pictured) and the way they do something or the way they say something will so exactly mirror my dad that I think: "Whoah! How did that just happen?"
It's times like those, when I see a spark of my dad in my girls, that I am comforted, even in my grief.
Those are the times that I think my dad must have met the girls after all, and I just don't understand how.