Friday, January 28, 2011

Pass-Along Descriptions: Grief

It happened. She died. One of my main characters, that is. I've been putting this part off forever because there's so much riding on it.

My previous note says: She dies now.

Don't panic, I've expounded on that. Today I sat down and wrote the scene. Then I re-read it and rolled my eyes. It's very first draft and needs an arena-size bin of polish applied. I'm working on it now and, slowly, it's coming around.

You know, grief is complicated. There are five stages, which can happen in any order. There's no right or wrong, since everyone reacts in different ways. Now that's what makes writing these parts interesting.

And getting a fresh take is even more interesting. I'm excited to see what you come up with.

Soooo . . . if you're up to another one, how would you write a physical and/or emotional description of grief?


  1. Hi, Jonene! Well, my sister's hubby died about 5 years ago. These are the emotions that hit me:

    disbelief--my world stopped and all I could think about was getting to my sister and her kids. Thoughts kept jumbling up in my head so fast, I couldn't focus. All I could think was: How?

    shock--when it finally sunk, i thought: he's gone. I'll never see him again. It was cold and lonely and dark. I was numb, unblinking and pensive. I imagined the agony he endured when it happened and felt awful because of the thoughts of never seeing his family as it happened.

    anguish--it's strange how an emotion can affect the physical body. I felt a big hole, a deep sharp ache in my chest. I would have to stop and bawl, my tears hot down my cheeks. And the hole would collapse and crush my heart. The pain worse.

    Feeling lost. Unsure, SO vulnerable in the emotional and physical sense.

    Paranoid. I started bawling when my hubby was only 20 minutes late from work because I thought something happened and he had died, too. I worried about my kids never coming home from school.

    What's funny now, Jonene, is that I still worry about not seeing my family when they step out that door. Lol, you can imagine how occupied the Lord is with my constant praying for their protection.

    There are several things that people choose from this point. A death defines the kind of person you are (it makes or breaks a person). It's helped me draw closer to the Lord whereas it has made people angry at Him, hence, growing spiritually weak until there is nothing but a dark and twisted form left.

    I hope this has helped. I'm planning to post on this on my personal blog sometime.

    Thanks for posting this, I love writing about emotions! ;)

    ♥.•*¨ Elizabeth ¨*•.♥

  2. Love these, Jonene. Such good practice!

    An immobilizing weight on my chest, pinning me back in my chair.

    Scrambling all my future plans.

    Waking up, at first free from memory, then suddenly crushed by a wall of brick.

    Pattern of life shattered. Stumble around, bare feet cut by the shards.

  3. Elizabeth, thank you for sharing such a personal experience, and for explaining in such a powerful way!

    Rebecca, I think you hit it on the nose, too, especially about the pattern of life. It seems that death has a way of shifting priorities for the living, sometimes to where they should have been, sometimes far off track.

  4. Wow, Elizabeth! That is so helpful. Thanks so much for sharing. I can really feel your pain. So sorry for your loss. BIG HUGS!


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