Dealing with Grief

Grief.  It’s a bad bed fellow.  Not for the faint of heart.  Not for the weak.  It strikes at the most inopportune times and comes like a thief in the night.  

I sometimes find myself, even now, grieving.  Someone close to me told me that, if I didn’t take time to grieve back then, that I would eventually.  I think that’s true.  Maybe a kind of get-it-over-with thing all at once, instead of the path I’ve chosen, which is apparently to continue grieving for years.  Adding to the list of those for whom I’m grieving, even.  The list grows every year.  Those I love get old, get sick, die.  It gets harder as you age.  My Mom told me it would, and I totally believe her.

Tonight, I am coming off what have been some of the most difficult weeks of my life.  This summer, even, with the death of yet another friend, was not easy.  It hits me from time to time.  I wonder how his wife is faring.  I wonder if his children miss him as much as his friends.  They must.  There would not be a normalcy to it if they did not.  I found myself stalking his Facebook page again this evening, just seeing if anyone had posted anything cool lately.  That’s the one thing about this particular life that is weird – your electronic mind lives on for as long as someone will allow it.

We lost a law school student first year to suicide.  I don’t know the circumstances, but we all grieved, even though some of us didn’t know him very well at all.  So many lives lost and changed.  So much sadness in the world.  Sometimes it makes me sad.  Today was one of those days.  I found myself crying at work at odd times, over almost nothing. Just stress and the sense of what happens in the end?  Does it matter if the proposal is late?  Does it matter if the wording is wrong?  Does it matter if the offer is countered, again?  Does any of it really matter?

I say no.  Most of it doesn’t.  Not in that sense, anyway.  Perhaps it matters to someone, but it doesn’t matter to me, because it’s not one of those things that will make a difference in 5 years.  That used to be my mantra, anyway.  If this X won’t make a difference in 5 years, and I won’t worry about X.  It gets harder as you get older as 5 years seems to pass too quickly, and you may not even have 5 years left.  But if you don’t, then the 5 years of making a difference doesn’t really matter, anyway, right?  Unless you do something that changes someone’s life.

The law is like that for me.  It does, in the immortal words of Al Pacino’s character in The Devil’s Advocate, touch everything.  Sports – check.  Medicine – check.  Water sprinklers – check.  Your glass of beer – check.  Anything you can imagine is touched by the law.  And, it is my place to make a difference. It is my place to allow my grief for those I’ve lost to make a better life for someone else.  

I never felt “called” to do something before I felt the call of the law.  It is like no other and it is amazing.

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