What Does Grief Feel Like?

Chris passed away 365 days ago. Not surprisingly time kept moving. As cliché as it is, after we lost him, it didn’t seem like time would or could go on, but it did.

This last year has been a deep emotional roller coaster.

At first it was answering Caloway’s questions about why mommy and Gigi were so sad. After which he kept offering to go get Uncle Chris and bring him back. Whew, yeah that was tough. Even thinking back on it now is remembering through tears just thinking how tender hearted my little guy is.

Then there was the obsessive week where I went through my pictures and found every single moment I had captured with Chris. A trip to Orlando, our high school graduations, the many times he visited me while I was at college or when mom and I took him out for his 21st birthday.

Mainly it is dealing with the complicated relationship he and I had over the last 7 years. One that was strained and difficult at times. Boundaries were set and held firm until the last few years of his life when I not only waited for his calls, but where I visited more often.

Another cliché, but grief is sneaky.

Too many times I have been enjoying my day and a song comes on the radio and I have to pull over because I couldn’t see through the tears. Not sleeping because of the dreams or nightmares, or just reliving happier moments I didn’t want to forget.

I was visiting with some friends of mine a few months ago at the house. They lost their daughter, a friend and sorority sister of mine, when we were in college. I made an aside comment about how I was feeling, “oh you know how grief is.” And then I stopped and looked at them and said “you know how grief is.” And then there were tears on my end and I just couldn’t seem to get them to stop to continue our conversation.

Becky said something that changed my path and led me towards healing and I will be forever grateful.

Grief is like walking around with rocks in your shoes. They are always there and you can feel them wherever you go. Some days the rocks move around so that you don’t feel them as much and other days the rocks hurt your feet so bad you have to stop and put your feet up.

This is exactly what my grief has felt like. Some days have been unbearable while other days it is a bit easier to wake up in the morning or fall asleep at night.

Time will still do its thing and lessen the newness of living in a world that doesn’t have Chris Cox in it. And I will continue to work through all these feelings. One way I plan to do this is with something I really dislike.

I am going to do the BikeMS. A bike race that covers 150 miles over 2 days and fundraise for Multiple Sclerosis in Chris’s name. I am not much of a bike rider, actually, I really don’t like bikes. Even at the gym I avoid spin class and the stationary bikes. I much prefer to run. In fact I will complete my 5th half marathon in a few weeks. But it seems appropriate to our relationship to do something for my brother that is not only out of my comfort zone, but something I really don’t want to do.

Training starts after I complete the OKC Memorial (half) Marathon and I am going to tack on a seemingly out of reach fundraising goal. I hope everyone will help support me in this goal, because I will need all the help I can get!

I really miss you Chris.

Comments

  1. Lindsey,
    My heart breaks for you and your family. Grief is different every day. You have to learn to live with it. I loved Chris. I hold you in my heart and prayers.

  2. I am so sincerely sorry ! I didn’t realize Chris had passed from this horrible disease. My heart aches for you all. But… I know without a doubt that Heaven awaits us with no more tears or pain. I picture your Chris with my Chris in Heaven. My Chris telling him “I know your Dad and he is a awesome friend!” Love from Texas my friends. Dee Knauss-Lemons

  3. My heart aches, and am so saddened by the news. Blessings and my deepest condolences my dear to you and your family. May God ease the path for healing, and may he rest in peace. Love always, Dounia

  4. You know you’re getting hugs from so many people right now.

    You mentioned doing the MS150, but not being a fan of bikes. Have you thought about a recumbent one? My uncle’s done a few charity races with a recumbent because traditional bikes just kill his knees.

  5. Very well said Lindsey but for me there just aren’t words to truly explain how much I miss him, I can’t even write this without bawling, I miss his humor, his kind heart, and how he didn’t hold anything back. It was always all or nothing,
    I don’t think I have ever cried as much as I have this past year but I can see something or hear someone say something and it reminds me of Chris and it breaks my heart every time. I miss him so dang much I only hope it gets easier with time, love you baby.

  6. Count on me for $1.00 a mile for your bike ride. What a wonderful testament for your brother. Grief is so personal – no one experiences it the same. It never truly goes away, just morphs into something you can deal with. My heart breaks for you – and believes in you.

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