Sunday, July 13, 2014


My front yard is like a picture of my grief. Smooth white rocks of resilience punctuated with weeds. Some weeds are tall and wide, fiercely breaking through the resilience with force. Other weeds are smaller, but perforate my resolve in a pesky way, giving me no peace.

No time. No energy. No desire. 

I have no time to devote to weeding my front yard. I watch the weeds crop up, grow higher every day. I scurry into my house, out of my house, to work, out of state, to my parents' house, to the group I attend for survivors of suicide, to the group I lead for eating disorders, to the store, to bed. I still have thank you cards to send and it's nearing 2 months since Rick died. I have a blog to write nightly for my own sanity. 

I have no energy to devote to weeding my front yard. I'm sicker now than I was on Friday. Even though I enjoyed being with great people and wouldn't have missed choosing my best friend's bridesmaids dresses or attending her engagement party for anything, I don't even know how I made it through the weekend in Connecticut. I relied on makeup and copious amounts of caffeine and cold medicine to appear as human as possible. When I saw the weeds as I got home from Connecticut today, I almost cried. They are embarrassing. A reminder that my house is a house of grief. 

I have no desire to weed my front yard. I look at it and I don't care. I feel ashamed that my front yard remains untended in my pretty, well-cared-for neighborhood where all the other townhouses are pristine and uniform. I wonder what the neighbors think. How annoyed they must be. But everything I have goes to my activities of daily living, and weeding is not among them. Tending to my grief is a full time job, because it's a constant dance to keep it at bay in order to work, play, and let it seep out slowly when I can control the ways in which I handle it...or to clean up the aftermath if a grief burst caught me unaware.

I need more sleep. More time off. More...

I can't take care of my front yard when I am putting all my efforts into caring for myself. That will have to be okay for now.


  1. Dear Arielle im sure your neighbours understand about the weeds.You are doing the best you can. You have to take care of yourself the weeds can wait.Be kind to yourself.I think you forgetting how well you are doing with what you have to deal with on a daily basis. Try and get some rest so you feel a little better.sending love and hugs xxxx Ann richardson

  2. If I didn't live in Canada I would go weed it for you. Take time for yourself. xo

  3. We need to take care of ourselves at times like these. I lost my fiancé suddenly 4 months ago. I have to write my chores (including weeding) on a daily check list in order for them to even be considered. I wasn't able to even do that until last week. I'm sure your neighbors understand that there are far more important things to take care of besides some pesky weeds.

  4. Self-compassion.
    Please tell yourself what you would tell a dear friend who had experienced what you have experienced.
    Unfortunately, this time of year weeds grow fast. I would imagine your neighbors know what has happened. I would imagine they wish they could do something to help. They understand. At some point in time we all need help. If you have neighbors that have not had the experience of either needing help or helping someone else, then this will be a lesson for them. We had an emergency in our family. Everything stopped. The weeds on our 5 acres were waist high. My neighbors didn’t know why we weren’t mowing. I had to be ok with that. I will be reminded when I see that someone is struggling with something—anything, I will feel compassion because it means just that—that they are struggling. No right, wrong, shame, nothing else, just struggling.
    Take good care.

  5. My daughter and I will come weed your yard and/or garden. You need to take care of yourself. If your neighbors are bothered with the weeds, they should lend a helping hand.


Help me feel less alone.