Saturday, August 17, 2013

Some Breathing Room

I was woken early Wednesday morning with a text from my mom with news that my aunt (her sister) had passed away. I knew that when I last spoke to my aunt on Sunday that we were saying good-bye - that I would never speak to her again or see her again as she had been slowing withering away in the hospital for the past few months, the cancer finally spreading to all parts of her body. Since Sunday what I wanted to do was just hide in my room and stay away from everything and everyone, but I decided no, my aunt was a lively, strong person - always approaching each day with strength and determination. So I went on with my day, my errands, my workouts. After speaking to my mom on Tuesday - which was my aunt's birthday - she told me that my aunt had lapsed into a coma and that the end was probably near. You'd think that given her deteriorating condition that it would not come to much surprise, but the level of emotion that rose up from inside me was like nothing I had experienced before.

I usually try to be strong, but this time I didn't try. The news of her death was very difficult to take. Part of me wanted to blog because I find this so cathartic, but in the end I couldn't bring myself to it. In fact, I shut myself away from all social media, all people, everything. It was enough having to send a few emails to notify her friends. It was enough having to deal with condolences messages that felt like such a heavy weight on my heart.

Aside from a visit from her two best friends who live here in Kuwait (at one time - for about 12 years - we all lived in Kuwait together), and D of course, I have completely withdrawn.

It's actually felt good.

It gave me the breathing room that I needed.

There are no words to describe how important my aunt was to me, absolutely no words, so I spent the last 3 days mostly in silence.

I our culture, we allow 3 days of mourning over someone's death and then we are told to move on with our lives ... because that is really all we can do. Death is inevitable, and life goes on. Clich├ęs, but they're true. It's not about forgetting the person you've lost. It's about realizing that there are other things that matter too - that your mourning should make you neglect the rest of your family, your own health, your other responsibilities. I like this tradition.

Today is the 3rd day and I've emerged - slightly - from the shadows. I still don't feel like talking to anybody, a lump has been lodged in my throat but I'm trying to breathe through it. I haven't seen anybody either ... driving has been out of the question as I've been too emotional. However, slowly but surely I'm moving on with things.

Food on Wednesday wasn't good - I ate pizza and a few mini sandwiches. I didn't really think about it or feel guilty about it. I just ate and then I stopped. The other days my food has been pretty much back on track.

I haven't left the house since Tuesday, so no gym, but I did some Jiujitsu at home with D. It helped me take my mind off things and made me feel a bit better.

Today there's some construction going on in our house. We're converting one of our rooms into a MMA practice room; that should be a nice distraction.


  1. I like your tradition too. Sometimes we try to move too fast past grieving thinking it's best to try to forget. I hope each day gets better and better for you as you deal with your loss.

  2. I'm so sorry for your loss. In time the sadness gets less but take comfort in the fact that love lasts forever.

  3. So sorry for your loss, lots of love to you x

  4. You have my deepest sympathy during this time of sorrow.
    Take care.

  5. I am so sorry for your loss, take care <3

  6. So sorry for your loss!! Even when you know its going to happen, youre still not prepared for the finality!


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