Our Hearts Are Tired

Do you ever feel so so tired, tired of the pain, tired of the sadness, tired of that complete emptiness you feel inside now the people you adored so much are no longer here. I always assumed with grief that it would be a process, a process of ups and downs, back and forth. What I never realised was how the pain I felt in my heart, would remain forever. So obvious, so raw, even now after my dad being gone for almost 18 months, it’s still so so real to me. Its something I’m living with every single day. And I’m tired of feeling that way, my heart is tired, I’m tired.

I find lately really having to prepare myself mentally for any type of celebration, or gathering where I’ll be with all my family. I almost have to have a little chat with myself beforehand, get your shit together Phebs, enjoy these moments, for yourself and dad. But it’s just so hard. So hard to feel the joy in those gatherings when something is so obviously absent from the group. I go over things a lot in my head, I’m a dreamer when it comes to my thoughts. I can easily get stuck in them, easily get carried away with them, and I have to be so careful with this as like so many of you will agree, it can leave me living only in the sadness. Only in the trauma of what happened and what we went through as a family when we lost dad. If I let myself stay there I can’t function properly, I’m not focused, I don’t give the best of myself to people, I’m not the best mother I could be, I’m not the best wife. It’s so hard to draw myself away from the sadness in my thoughts as I allow myself to daydream but I know I have to, not just for myself and my own healing but for those I love too.

It’s about finding that strength, isn’t it. That control where you almost harness your grief and take control of it, not allowing it to overcome and take control of you. And that’s how I feel I cope best, when I own my grief, when I take the reigns and say “right, not today, not right now” but then after that not suppressing it, not dismissing it, instead, finding a quiet space, a time to sit in stillness in those thoughts and allowing those emotions and that pain to flow. And that’s so necessary for our healing allowing what needs to flow, flow. We can’t keep it bottled up, we can’t shunt it aside. That’s not how grief works, it demands to be seen, it demands to be felt. After all, how can something we loved so much be taken away from our lives, and it not be this way. Grief is the price we pay for our love. And a price I would pay a million times again knowing that it meant I got to spend 30 years sharing life with my dad, I wouldn’t change that in a second.

Grief is exhausting, its honestly something I couldn’t comprehend until I lost my dad. It’s consuming, it’s like a permanent shadow with you every day. A permanent hollowness inside. I sometimes for a moment forget that my dads no longer here, and think “oh I must tell dad that” to be quickly knocked back by the reality that he’s not here anymore. Leo starts school next week, and when getting his uniform ready today on its hangers I had the deepest ache in my heart knowing I wouldn’t be able to FaceTime my dad on his first morning before school starts. Leo wouldn’t be able to stand and show his Grandpa his uniform, Dad wouldn’t be able to fill him with words of encouragement for his very first day, “You’ll be so great Lion Boy” That’s what he’d say. And that just feels so sad to me, to feel like life has ripped us of those moments, those firsts that we never got the chance to have. Just taken away so cruelly, death will just take and take, and it’s beyond our control. And that is something to this day, months on, I really struggle with.

When my dad died a part of me went with him. And I know that it’s the same for my whole family, my mum, and my siblings. My nana, my dad’s sisters, his friends. None of us are the same now, none of us are whole anymore. And that’s something I was never prepared for. How the loss of him would reshape us all as adults, how we would all change. Some parts for the worse, I have a lot more anger now, I sometimes get stuck in that, it’s a very negative place to be. But some parts of me have changed for the better, I’m more compassionate now, I feel deeper, I connect deeper to people, I have more time to acknowledge and support others. And that’s a gift my dad has left me with.

We will never feel or be the same, but we must look for the gifts they’ve left us with. It may not be obvious to you right now, but in time, it will become clear. It’s only goodbye for now, not forever. And whilst we have this time, we should do all we can to make it great. We will ride these waves together, we will feel the emptiness together, we will heal day by day together until we meet them again. Our hearts are tired, but we will find that strength. That power within to push forward, to live as they wished, you’ve got this, we’ve got this, x

Latest posts by Phoebe Young (see all)

1 Comment

  1. Gordon Hopkins
    August 31, 2020

    Dear Phoebe,
    Thank you for your beautiful introspective inquiry into your own grief. I was fortunate enough to meet your dad on a retreat in Costa Rica in 2012. I knew him as a passionate, animated, alive human being who our retreat leader nicknamed “Mr. Volcano”!
    I remember him coming up to me excitedly after I had had an altercation with the retreat leader. It had been a forceful exchange where I expressed my anger honestly. Simon supported my stance with an exuberant enthusiasm and said, “You were the BOSS!” …with his mischievous grin! I felt so supported and gave me what I really needed in that moment.
    My wife, Patricia, is friends with your mom. That is how I was shown your blog. I read it with interest, and I felt a lot from it. It turns out, am now entering into the 51st “anniversary” of the suicide of my identical twin brother by carbon monoxide, a week before our 19th birthday, September 5, 1969. These dates of profound loss stay with us, don’t they? We never forget…we’re never meant to forget. These events infuse deeply into our lives and can cause momentous changes in our life’s trajectory.
    So I have lived a lifetime without him. As you so eloquently said about life “ripping us of those moments.” I can still feel grief and loss when I think of all those lost moments…I will never see how he grew up…no wedding…no sweetheart…now nephews…enjoyments forever lost. Regret, and even some guilt about his passing…could I have done more, or done things differently?
    Here our experience of the circumstances of our loss diverge, But the nature of Loss is what we share. Eighteen months…51 years! So do I have anything to say to you that could be helpful? Let’s see…
    It did change my life dramatically. Right after his death I became an “angry atheist” and denying any meaning that life could have. What could possibly justify his suffering to drive him to raise a hand against himself? What was worth that kind of suffering? Anything??? ! The anger did eventually lessen… although trust has always been a sticking point for me.
    So now, sure I miss him still. I feel that thru the journey I embarked upon from the pain of his death…has enabled me to open to a more expanded perspective about life in general. I feel more compassion than anger nowadays! Looking back, I feel that his death was the way for me to relate in a different way, to this human adventure. Oddly enough, I feel enriched many of the experiences I have had that were catalyzed by his passing; it put me on a road I probably never would have found otherwise. That was his gift to me, I suppose. I am in assurance that “All’s Well,” in my more expanded moments. And in this broader perspective I am able to feel the Universe as an essentially “friendly” place, and that we are all moving in Grace.
    Thanks for your blog post…it gave me the opportunity to write this…on this anniversary.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to top