Grief is for the Living

Sunday, August 20, 2017 / 12:07 PM

I spent the majority of this day one year ago in bed watching The Great British Bake-Off. It's not productive to re-hash what happened and the terrible final 24 hours we went through as a family, but all I remember was feeling vulnerable and helpless – 3,000 miles away, and all I could do was send emails and call and try to get the convalescent home to listen as my aunt was dying. By the time she took her last breath, I don't know if anything I did made a difference other than to get one person to finally respond and say "sorry" they had forgotten about her needs.

When somebody you love dies, the grief is impossible to put into words. Even a year later, I don't have the right words to reflect on the loss. All I knew at the time was that I could no longer afford to be 3,000 miles away, and so I packed up and came back to California – a decision I 100% don't regret.

We went to her grave site yesterday to lay flowers and say "hello." My grandmother still hasn't been, which my dad is judgmental about, but I don't think he gets it because his side of the family is always in this perpetual state of petty fighting. It's been hard to feel like I should've come home sooner, been there for when I was needed. But I think being back now is good enough. It's the least I could've done.

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