Feb 22, 2021 1 min, 42 secs

Before Covid-19 took my father last spring, time meant opportunity: for exploring new places, hanging out with friends, savoring my mother’s cooking, or even just getting my work done before deadline.

And, with the exception of waiting at the bus stop in the pre-dawn New England winter, it always seemed like time rushed by too fast.

After burying my father on the first day of May last year, time suddenly became a burden.

But after burying my father on the first day of May last year, time suddenly became a burden?

And if something like eating didn’t matter, then what was the use of having all the time in the world for it.

We were left alone, with stunted possibilities for commemoration, but with oh so many hours — stretching out in front of us, useless, unwanted, but needing to be filled just the same.

The volume that made the biggest difference was “Finding Meaning: The Sixth Stage of Grief,” by David Kessler, because it actually provided an answer to a question that at that point I hadn’t realized I was asking: What can I do to embrace time — and life — after loss.

“But finding meaning in loss empowers us to find a path forward.” He notes that this can take many different forms, from honoring a loved one to experiencing gratitude for the time we had with them to recognizing the value of life to making a major change as a result.

Like reading about loss, concrete actions connected to my dad were the things that felt most purposeful, and therefore provided moments of respite.

And indeed, like reading about loss, concrete actions connected to my dad were the things that felt most purposeful, and therefore provided moments of respite.

It doesn’t mean that I’m not still grieving and depressed and struggling with nihilism, but it does mean that I have something that allows me to look forward once again to the time stretching out in front of me — all the way until orbisculate gets into the dictionary


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