Grief on the Body

I’ve been up for almost two hours. As soon as I opened my eyes, I felt unease in my body. This has been my constant state since my grandmother died.

I’m told the process of grieving is a series of advances and setbacks. I’m still not completely recovered from my night “out” on Friday.

The day of her funeral, I was depleted of everything I possessed. I hung out with my cousin for a little while, then I had to go lay down. I laid down and it felt like someone had double-stacked cinder blocks along the length of my body. I felt a thousand pounds of pressure on every inch of my skin.

I haven’t felt that kind of pain since that day but my back and shoulders hurt often. I’ve had two massages since my grandmother passed. They’ve done nothing.

If you opened up my chest and told me my heart was literally ripped in two, I’d believe it. My heart will be broken forever. Nothing will ever hurt me again.

I feel like I’m walking around in a bubble no one else can get inside of. Everyone else is bustling about, living their lives, while I am consumed by the unyielding pain of grief.

I think about my grandmother constantly.

I alternate between being extremely hungry and having no appetite. My stomach growls as I type this. I’m exhausted all the time.

Grief hangs about me like a thick, black cloak.

I don’t know how I carry it around every day, but I do.

It doesn’t help that today is the eighth anniversary of Michael Jackson’s passing. When he died, I remember calling my grandmother and wailing, “Michael Jackson died!” My grandmother just said, “I know, Baby, I know.” She loved him as much as I did.

I remember sitting on the floor in my grandmother’s kitchen, rapt, elbows on my knees, hands under my chin, watching the premiere of the “Black or White” video. My mind exploded as I watched people of different races morph into each other. This was the first time this special effect was ever used (including this fact for the young millennials reading this).

Now that I’m in this stage of my life, I wonder how Michael Jackson’s children are feeling today. Has their grief eased over the last eight years? Do they have a special ritual they perform every year on the anniversary of his death? Are they all together?

Mom-Mom, I called you when Michael Jackson died. Now you’re gone. Who do I call now?





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