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Where do you plan to be in five years?

How many times have you answered this question during a job interview? They expect us to have a goal. People expect you to answer with some advancement, promotion, or completing a degree. Instead, maybe you want to save up to buy a home or take a nice vacation.

What are your expectations for your life? I assume you have something you would like to achieve.

Me? Five years ago, I was in the middle of a basement overhaul. I was grinding down the concrete floor to be smooth, staining it, painting walls, and fixing lots of issues with it. It was going slow and I might would have said I hoped to be done with it within five years. I had just started a new job and had ambitions to excel there. I never imagined my son would be dead in a week.

I cried occasionally after Emily died, but mostly I was angry that those around us and God abandoned us. I never expected to cry so much when Caleb died. Okay, sure, the first day or two is expected, but no, I am talking about years of crying. Five years out and the waterworks have slowed down, not because I don’t cry, but because I ran out of tears. I don’t know how else to explain it. I cry on the inside much like before, but the eyes usually stay dry now.

It also never occurred to me that others had expectations that my grief would be suddenly gone in three months, six months, a year, or even five years. Yet here we are, people who left five years ago comment on how I am not handling it right or should be over it. Interestingly, the same thing happened when Emily died fourteen years ago. I suppose those people finally gave up waiting for my progress. Though many other grieving parents experience the same thing, unironically, it is those who still have many of their old relationships intact that seem to speak about it a bit differently. They too still mourn, but seemingly from a better place.

Where will I be in five years? The statistical analysis of the past fourteen years says I should expect to be right where I am today, still mourning my children.

See Related: Letter to Caleb: One Year, Four


Published inGrief

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