Grief In My Aura

Aura is defined as, “A supposed emanation surrounding the body of a living creature, viewed by mystics, spiritualists, and some practitioners of complementary medicine as the essence of the individual, and allegedly discernible by people with special sensibilities.”  Recently, a stranger with said “special sensibilities” relayed to me that I have “grief in my aura.”  He also mentioned that I am “dealing with SO MANY emotions that I am trying to solve, resolve, fix and rationalize.”  That pretty much sums me up in a nutshell.  My aura must look like a hot mess.  Instead of a pure, bright white light or even a vibrant rainbow of colors, my aura just might appear more 50 shades of gray and foggy with a cold, salty mist spraying the space around me.  At least that is how I FEEL it might look.  In a currently abandoned motivational speaking piece that I worked on for weeks, I focus on the aura-its brightness and thickness and offer suggestions on ways to illuminate our light (or supposed emanation according to the above definition) while here on earth.  Instead of motivating others with my spiritual lessons, I am resigned to working on my own issues, which I am hopeful will result in positive changes to my aura.

I have no idea what grief actually looks like, but I know it is a force to be reckoned with. I believe that I have been Hostess Extraordinaire to this once again uninvited guest as this is not my first trip to the Grief Rodeo.  I have devoted myself to her needs for the better part of seven months with no paid time off.  That is until the past few weeks when I dared to consume myself with the final arrangements of my 40th High School Class Reunion which also included attending three events associated with this weekend of festivities.  A few days after the culmination of reunion events, my spouse and I headed to the mountains of North Carolina for a much deserved break.

In an effort to maintain some sense of composure in front of former classmates and their guests, I did not invite Ms. Grief to the reunion.  I even rehearsed a mini speech that I would offer up should anyone (and a few did) ask me the dreaded question, “Do you have any children?”  My reply was a swift and curt, “I had a son who passed away earlier this year, the result of a diabetic episode.  I am not talking about it this weekend.”  For the better part of three days, I (mostly) put on my gap-toothed smiling face and reconnected with fellow classmates.  And then I busied myself for THE trip.  The mini vacation that would provide me and my co-griever with a change of scenery complete with mountains, fresh air, touristy attractions and a sense of calm and peace that nature can usually provide.

Do you know what Ms. Grief whispered into my ear?  “You can run but you cannot hide.  You can mingle all weekend with former classmates and drive a few hundred miles to another state with breathtaking topography, but I MUST be included.”  And so, all of that stuffing down of emotions followed by an attempted mountainous escape resulted in a stuffing up of my sinuses, a day or two of the blase’ for my Guy, and the reality that my grief and loss go where I go.  As my spouse and I sat in a lipstick red, converted double-decker bus coffee shop in scenic, artsy, hippie Asheville, NC, I was overcome with emotion.  Just like that.  Tears spilling down my face into my pricey iced coffee.  Ms. Grief had indeed joined us.  For all I know she had packed a bag and ridden shotgun with us all the way to the Blue Ridge Mountains.  Oh, and about those mountain views and clean, crisp air?  We experienced little of that.  The picturesque terrain that defines western North Carolina was hidden by gray, foggy, misty, low-slung clouds.  Sound familiar?  Even my mountain escape was enveloped in its own aura of grief.

And so I say to Mr. Stranger Special Sensibilities, you are 100 % correct.  There IS grief in my aura and my ever-thinking brain IS attempting to solve, resolve, fix and rationalize the tragic, unimaginable event that occurred 223 days ago.  I now understand that I am at my current best at home, nestled in my cocoon, surrounded by a small group of family and friends.  I read, write, exercise, and attempt to quiet my mind through meditation.  But mostly, I am the hostess with the mostest to Ms. Grief.  Together we are traveling my current journey of grief.  Final destination?  Acceptance.


8 thoughts on “Grief In My Aura

  1. There is not a day I don’t think of you. Grief is necessary to survive a pain like yours. Embrace it, these might not be the words you want to hear but it’s part of a healing process. Then, slowly comes the peace. Life has twists and turns, happy and painful roads. God has His plan. Have faith. You still have a purpose in this life. Sending positive vibes and love to you Joan. You are such an inspiration for me.

    • Thank you for reading and commenting. I believe that by sharing our stories, we can help one another traverse this thing called Life!

  2. I just don’t know what to write in response. I want to show I support you in some sort of way, but I fear it’s pointless. I’m glad you are, in some ways, venting through your writing, but not sure how much it helps. Maybe it’s a little bit of a distraction–maybe it helps somebody else. I guess I’ll just say “know that even though we can’t help, we really do care, and our heart continues to break for you.”

    • Thank you Gordon. We appreciate all of the thoughts and prayers directed our way. Writing helps, as it allows me to vent and also provides some sense of purpose. We don’t expect people to know what to say or do, but just knowing that they care is very helpful. Thanks for caring.

  3. Joan, had no idea. There was an air about you (aura) and now I understand why I felt it. It has been a long time since Damon Rd was our home, longer for you. I thought the hug you gave me on Friday was maybe that; but, now it might have been that and all the other mix of feelings and emotions running rampant. I can’t say that I can ever relate as I have no children of my own. I can relate to the emptiness you may feel. It, I suspect, is similar to loss of both parents and having no natural children. But, suspect it is only a glimpse.

    My heart was and is breaking just reading and writing this note. Know that you are loved and through loving the pain will ease. And, in time, be replaced by the joyful memories.

    May God Bless

    • Hello Brian. First, thank you for taking the time to read this post. I appreciate it. Secondly, thank you for the kind, well-written words. It has been a long time since I had seen you. As Gordon expressed after the reunion, even with the best of intentions, it was difficult to connect with everyone. I wish we had spoken more and had been able to catch up. We ALL live with pain on and off throughout life. Losing parents, grandparents, friends, and even pets happens to all of us. And yes, being unable to have children if that is your desire, also may evoke a sense of loss for “what might have been.” It is up to us to make some sort of peace with our loss and our own mortality and arrive at a place of acceptance. I hope that life has been mostly good for you. Perhaps we can catch up some time in person? My husband and I were in “the hood” earlier this week. I pointed out your house as well as many others. It was a special place to call home.

      Kind Regards.

  4. Wow. Just wow Joan. I have no words to describe how this affected me -so much so that I am printing it. Incredibly insightful. Love you dearly ❤️

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