Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Chipping Away

Every day, I think I learn a little more about myself. Not my hopes and dreams, which have always been in the forefront of my mind, but the little things that somehow add up to bigger things. When you sit with yourself every night, you're faced with realizations, revelations, and a clearer picture of what you really feel.

I chip away at old ways of thinking and imagine stone falling away, a new kind of Arielle with fresh skin waiting beneath to feel the air. 

I don't know what I'm doing here in the Grief Zone. I don't have a handbook. I just take it day by day and assume that everything I'm doing is right, because it's right for me. Grief makes me bolder. I don't censor myself any longer. I don't hold back emotion. I am who I am. 

I have learned the hard way that life is just too short and unpredictable for us to be guarded. I won't keep from telling people how much I care about them in any capacity. 

If I feel appreciation, you'll know it.
If I feel love, you'll know it. 

I am not afraid to say the things that people keep to themselves. I don't mind being emotional as long as I'm being truthful. 

I'm chipping away at the stone that encases me. The fresh, vulnerable Arielle wiggles inside the stone, her toes and fingers reaching out, her mouth moving to say the words that she wants to say. 

I have never been ashamed of emotion. I have been chipping away at the pretense to which other people are so accustomed for years now. During my interactions with others, I feel at times that my genuine emotion makes people uncomfortable. I just want to be real. I don't see the point in hiding away. I don't see the use in mastering secrecy. Maybe that's why I'm a blogger - putting life out there on the web for the world to see. 

I think about the life I had with Rick and it's beginning to feel like a different time than the life I am living now. It used to feel like he was just away and would come home. It used to feel like I was still living "our" life and he was missing. But now... Now I feel like I have a new life, one without him. He isn't missing. He just doesn't exist here in this one. He belonged in the old life.

I miss the old life sometimes. I didn't want to leave it behind. Some days I get nervous... I feel like I'm driving away at a rapid speed, watching my old life get smaller and smaller in the rearview mirror. It chokes me up. It hurts my heart. I'm moving farther and farther into the new life. The divide between the old life and this one is becoming larger. 

Some days that divide feels immense. I get to feeling like I want to dip my toes back into the old life for a while, but I can't reach across the divide any longer. It's a very wide, very deep chasm...and to try to climb over it or jump across would be too scary. Too dangerous. I cannot go back.

I can no longer go back.

So I stand on the New Life side with my unsure footing and I look across the divide into Old Life. I squint. I see it there, just as I remembered it, untouched like the room of a newly deceased person. The Old Life looks so comfortable and comforting,  full of experience, memories, and love. So much of me wants to jump that chasm and rock back and forth in that place I used to call home. But I cannot go back.

The divide has become too great. The timeline grows each day. I am here now. New Life spreads before me. Old Life is behind me, on the other side of the divide. It's unreachable now. And I realize that my own courage, learning, and determination is what has been chipping away at that divide this whole time. I am the reason the divide has become so great. I am the reason it's so wide and so deep. I am the reason I cannot go back. Every day of pain and strength and learning has brought me here. My resilient grief created the chasm. There is reason. There is purpose. I understand now. And I am grateful.


  1. "My resilient grief created the chasm." - Yes, this - this is deep wisdom. I'm just at the beginning of the divide, but your words resonate deeply within me.

  2. Dear Arielle this journey you are on would make you feel uneasy because there is a lot of different feelings thoughts and emotions you are going through you, You are moving forward through each and everyday with Grace,Strength,Wisdom and Courage. sending love and hugs xxxx Ann richardson


Help me feel less alone.