An interesting insight I’ve obtained from having two family members die within 2 months from one another:
This thing is too big to handle in the usual way.
If you don’t know what I mean, think about what you do when something small, and say, more than an annoyance, but less than catastrophic happens in your life. We usually have a comfort zone of how we handle things. I, for example, will generally take refuge in books (generally something that has a half-clothed duke or baron on the cover holding a wind-swept, but lovely lady) and hunker down, waiting for the storm to pass.
When your brother dies, and then your mom dies, all the Julia Quinn in the world isn’t going to help. This is when we have to think about our resources, and not just put out fires, but watch for a hint of smoke, a hard, dry wind, and try to keep the yard damp.
Instead of my usual MO, I’ve called in my people (and there are so many of you!), and returned those phone calls of love, and responded to those texts, and gone to the acupuncturist. I took a couple of weeks off of teaching, am continuing bereavement leave from my other job, and cancelled volunteer engagements that I was already committing myself to for the new school year. My usual way was not, and is not going to cut it here. I have the grief to deal with, but I am also the executor to my mom’s estate, and I have to say, it’s a horrible and onerous job.
But friends, I’m back to teaching, and available again. And for all of you that I’ve heard from, thank you from the very bottom of my heart. I am loved. Thank goodness.