Grief is exhausting

When I received the news of my father’s passing, it felt like the earth had done a flip on its side. I couldn’t make immediate sense of what had transpired- in retrospect this slight delay to comprehend was a defense mechanism -when I did my body began to shut down. I could feel every cell going into survival mode to conserve energy and I soon became a zombie, unable to sleep, eat, or think clearly. The only thing I did quite effectively was cry. I wanted to be alone most times except when something needed to be done, and then I felt the need for the presence of another who could function better as I had let my own faculties, for the most part, go on leave.

I grew reluctant to answer any more calls unsure of which ones would serve against me, as my guesses proved, time and again, to be wrong. I came to find that ‘some’ people can be weird and sometimes offensive towards the griever. It made me wonder why they even bothered at all. During this time, it became clear to me quite quickly those who were no good, and I must say the revelation coupled with my grief was stifling. Disappointing messages from a few who I had termed a part of my ‘inner circle’ poured in with excuses “I’m tired right now, but sorry for your loss, call me if you want to talk.”

“I heard the news, but I’m busy, I’ll call when I can” radio silence.

It was as though they had heard I had a stomach ache or had stubbed my toe. Unfeeling. Cold. Then there were those who reached out seemingly to rile me up and upset me further. I was in no position to cater to the confusing emotions of others. I felt like an injured animal sprawled on unforgiving streets, waiting for the vehicle that would bring me to my fate.

Even more surprising to me were the reactions I got from ‘some’ people I hadn’t had frequent contact with, or who were not necessarily as close to me. Their support, love, and readiness to be present threw me off balance completely. It certainly was not a time to make comparisons, but when a bright red light is flashing at you in the darkness it’s impossible to ignore. The suffocating feeling started to wane a bit when I made the instant decision to let go of those who proved to be, quite frankly, useless. I began sifting through the clutter, or maybe this was some sort of distraction from the dark cloud that pressed in around me so that I could see nothing but grief. I came to despise the words “You have to be strong” from well-meaning people. How on earth was I to do that?

I did however manage to find a sliver of peace when people told me funny stories of dad. Those were the conversations I enjoyed and entertained. They certainly made me laugh, something I never thought could be possible in the midst of all the turbulent emotions.

It hit like a punch in the gut when people said words along the lines of “It has happened, you have to move on,” did these people not realize that I was entitled to my grief? That they did not have the right to tell me how to grieve, or when to ‘move on’ as they put it. People don’t seem to understand that when you lose a parent your life doesn’t simply bounce back to how it was prior to the loss. Something changes, however little, something changes.

The experience of grief is of course different for each individual because different people experience grief differently. Regardless, if you speak to a griever, they will tell you that it changed their life. It could be that it changed their mindset, or made them more aware of their mortality. For me amongst other things it was that I no longer wanted to do anything just for the sake of doing it, or because it was expected of me by society or some other self-imposing body or individual. This realization in itself changed my life overnight, from the work I was currently engaged in to even tweaking my long-term goals and reshuffling a few plans here and there. My pressing need to only want to do things that would bring me peace and fuel joy heightened.

I became completely intolerant to accommodating behaviors that made me uncomfortable and I voiced my views more readily- something I had often been cautioned against because “What would people think of you?” I no longer could be bothered to care. Life is too short to please people at the expense of your self-respect, or to be miserable because you are trying to adhere to societal expectations and rules, or to not add value in however little of a way you can. When you lose a parent, life as you know it changes.

-Nemi B

Words

And there are no words, and there have been no words,
For your eyes speak truths I can only dream,
Truths that I have only dreamed,Image result for heartbreak
And there is no sound, yet the silence screams,
It screams that the end, is upon us,
But is it truly?
There goes that burning, the one that lingers on my heart,
It says different,
For the world over I have been, and deep down I know, as I have always…
There will never be another you.

-Nemi B

Image Credit: Google Images

 

 

The Haunting

But will it crumble at my touch?
Or burn until we fall?
The elevating sounds only then they heed my call,Image result for romance painting
The sounds a’rich with color that only ears can see,
To you myself I give, to you myself I leave,
So that I am not, but I am…
Beyond all comprehension I babble like a fool,
I babble through my fingers against the tender keys,
Will it crumble at my touch, the flesh above your bones?
Will this burn until we fall?
And have none left to call?
Do you feel my quickened pulse? The fables left concealed?
Of your eyes, your lips, the haunting

The haunting of your gaze and the hands that play like fate,
The haunting of your smile, I shall perish at this rate,
Love me now or never, down the cliffs we roll… to jagged edges and rippled waters
To you myself I give, to you myself I leave,
So that I am not, but I am
Can you tell of the fables? Can you feel my pulse?
For by your eyes, your lips, I am haunted
It would burn until we fall, and none will be left standing,
For if the world began today, it could not have been later,

Whence first our eyes beheld, did we know the game of fate?
Or like mere mortals were we led unbeknownst?
For my life, you have altered to the very strings that bind, gentle sighs, your laughter, you haunt me

I babble through my fingers against the tender keys, do not you hear the music?
From you it was begot, it’s written in your eyes, it’s carved upon your lips,
It taunts the blood within so that it boils,
I shall perish at this rate!
Apaixionado por você, ou meu coração está louco!

I babble through my fingers against the tender keys, and time is endless…
Of your eyes, your lips, I am haunted.

-Nemi B

 

Image Credit: Google Images

 

All is vanity

Image result for jewels paintingShe rips her heart out thinking it will stop the pain,
Hoping to turn cold, like ice and fails
She lets go of the one she cares about because it makes her feel insane, because all is vanity, all is vain.
Emotions play like chords on a guitar,
Feelings none but she can explain, but not with words,
Not with words,
Do not suffer her to speak, for her thoughts are confusion but her heart is sure,
So let her show you…
But, you refuse her,
You stay her hand and refuse her comfort
You shun her because your walls are high and mighty
But you do not see, for you are blind,
Blind to behold that only one bold can venture unarmed into the lion’s den,
Or one foolish…foolish with emotion because all is vanity, all is vain,
You fail to see that which you have been served on a platter of gold,
Until it rots and gathers the flies so that it must be cast out,
For all is vanity and all is vain… and even the best of meals will rot untouched
Comfort refused, silence for compassion and coldness for warmth…a punishment ill received,
A punishment that turns sweetness to venom against its will.
Those high walls…they will not keep,
There will come a warmth persistent in its craft that the irons would melt, and you will find that all is vanity,
And all is vain.

-Nemi Boyo

 

 

Image credit: google images

Every day is beautiful

Distant beats arouse my feet so with the ground they meet,
The sands of Porto da Barra sift through my toes, Warm from the heat of the Bahiana sun,
The ocean sprays upon my face; the air is fresh with salt…
Água de côco cool and sweet, like the beats of OlodumOlodum
Ah Olodum! You know the pathway to my heart
The beats entice, so hips sway restless and feet move in samba formation,
Seduced by Caipirinha Capoeira dancers line the streets,
My heart skips a jolly beat because it’s alive,
The music, the dancing, the laughter, the singing,
Celebrating life “todos os dias é bonita”

 

Glossary:
Porto da Barra: a beach in Salvador
Bahiana: from the state of Bahia
Água de côco: Coconut water
Olodum: African- Brazilian Percussive group
Caipirinha: Brazil’s national cocktail made with a distilled alcohol known as Cachaça, sugar, and lime
Capoeira: Brazilian martial art that combines dance, music and acrobatics
Todos os dias é bonita: Every day is beautiful

 

Image Credit: http://www.copa2014.gov.br/pt-br/noticia/olodum-araketu-e-margareth-menezes-se-destacam-na-fan-fest-de-natal