This year was filled with some highs but mostly lows. The highs were the birth of my second grandson and attending a Duran Duran concert. And getting one of those “good” government jobs that Black folks aspired to for decades. But it was a rough year for me again because I lost more people I loved and other folks I know lost people that they loved too. Grief is a motherfucker.
Since October, I’ve lost a cousin and five friends. My social media friends have lost family and friends. It’s been a season of tears for so many of us and it seems like we are drowning in sorrow.
This aspect of aging is something I wasn’t ready for. As a child, you worry about losing your parents but you never think about losing your siblings, cousins, and friends. Childishly, you think that you and your crew are going to grow up and old together but that’s not true and it’s a bitter pill to swallow.
I’ve cried so many tears in the past three years and just when I think my tear tank has officially dried up, I lose someone else and the tears start flowing again. I’m so tired of losing people I love.
Two weeks ago, a very special lady crossed over into eternity and her name was Rosemary. She was my first cousin and she was loved by many. As a child, she was the most glamorous woman in the world to me and she brought excitement with her presence whenever she showed up.
She was this blazing comet who came to earth to fill us with joy and laughter, brimming over with passion and fire. Now her job is done and while here, she lived her life with gusto and pizazz. It’s going to take a long, long time for me to deal with the reality that she is no longer amongst us in the human form but some people are unique like that, their essence so powerful yet at the same time, so fragile. Those who loved her should be grateful that we had her at all. Rest In Power Rosemary. You was the big sister I never had and I will always love you.
I’ve been owned by a fat, black cat named Diddy for 13 years and I love him very much but I’m saddened by the fact that he’s getting older. Because that means he won’t be a part of my life anymore and it hurts acknowledging that. I wished that our fur babies had the longevity of us humans but that’s not the way Mother Nature created the world. So I’m going to enjoy my time with him and love him. My old man🐈⬛🐈⬛🐈⬛🐈⬛
I would like to wish everyone a Merry Christmas to everyone but in particular to everyone who has suffered the loss of loved one this year or previously. The holidays are rough for those who are grieving and it’s hard pretending to be happy when you’re not.
While on Facebook, my memory feed popped up and I saw a picture of my brother Larry who died last year. The picture was taken seven years ago and he looked so happy and I was so happy to see him. We ate good, drank good, and had a marvelous time commiserating with my children. And now he’s gone and all I have left is memories and it’s so hard for me to believe that he’s gone.
There are many like me who are experiencing this sense of loss, loneliness and confusion during what is supposed to be the most wonderful time of the year. So get some rest and chill out my fellow grievers. Don’t let anyone work your nerves. Brighter days are coming.
I’m sure that any folks who come across my blog and read my work is probably thinking “Man she morbid as hell!” And I don’t mean to be but so much has happened to me in such a short time. Loss of loved ones, health issues, all kinds of shit. But someway, somehow, I manage to persevere. The way I go about it might be puzzling to some but it makes perfect sense to me.
American culture shames people for having emotions outside of being constantly happy all the time. Even through times of immense grief, people are expected to put on their best faces and pretend that they aren’t hurting in order to not offend anyone. How selfish and inane is that mentality. How cruel and heartless. And utterly American.
So as I dwell in the valley of the emotion called grief, I’ve decided that the best way to deal with it is facing it squarely in the face. I look at pictures of my lost ones, laughing on some days and on other days crying. But I have to see their faces so I refuse to stop.
I’ve started a collection of pictures on my Facebook page called “Blackness Personified” and it’s filled with pictures of Black people from various decades. Some of the pictures are of celebrities and some of the pictures of regular Black folks. I chose those pictures because they reminded me of simpler times, when I was a little girl and my family was still alive.
I reread books that I read when I was a much younger woman and marvel at how much I’ve grown as an individual. Certain passages in those books I didn’t get in 1989 I understand totally now in 2021.
I talk to my ancestors too. I’m not a religious person. I’m downright heathenish for the most part but I do believe in the power of the ancestors and that they watch over us from wherever they happen to be.
I talk about them constantly because I have to keep them alive, if not in body but spirit because if I don’t, they will truly be dead and I cannot face that. It’s enough that I will never be able to see them again in the physical but to pretend that they never existed just because they died is beyond cruel: it’s sick.
So I will continue to tell their stories. Like the time my mother and I beat up my older brother because he was drunk and ignorant and we had to let him know the true power of Black Girl Magic by whupping on that ass. My memories is all I have left of them and I will continue to tell their stories. And when I become an ancestor, my children will do the same for me. Or I will haunt their asses.