February 04, 2015

Two Rules: No Moping and No Waterboarding

Based on everything I've heard about coping with death, the only thing that really helps is time.

Now, I'm not here to dismiss Chicken Soup for the Soul wisdom but as far as I can tell, time isn't helping; every day since Pop died has been harder than the last because every day, it becomes more real that he is actually gone. Every day I come closer to wrapping my head around what that actually means.

The thing is though that the last thing that Pop would have advised me to do about it is mope around the internet. You see, Pop had been fighting leukemia for the last 20 years of his life and late stage colon cancer for at least the last 6 months but somehow, the only person who never seemed to mope about that fact was Pop.

Sure, sometimes he'd say it "really sucks" to be tired all the time, but he never felt sorry for himself or expressed any bitterness. Instead, even through the last week of his life, Pop approached everything with a sense of humor.

For example, one of the last memories I have of Pop is from the week before he died when I came to visit. He was so sick that he wasn't able to get out of bed, couldn't eat, could barely drink, and could only talk for short amounts of time.

As I was sitting there, my grandmother came in to try getting Pop to drink something. She had a bottle of water with a straw and was pushing it into his face.

It was clearly hard for Pop to take each sip but after every one, my grandmother would insist, "One more, just one more." Finally, Pop got so fed up that he, in the loudest voice I'd heard all afternoon, declared, "No more. This is waterboarding."

It was silent for a second, and then we couldn't help but bust out laughing.

I love that memory because it was just such a Pop thing to say. He could have said so many different things: "No more, it hurt too much." (Which I'm sure it did.) "No more, I'm too tired." (Which I'm sure he was.) "No more, this isn't fair." (Which it definitely wasn't.)

But no, Pop went with waterboarding. Because no matter what life hands you, you always have the choice to keep your humor.

I'm new to this whole loss of a loved one thing but I do know that it would be foolish of me to say that now, a week later, I'm ready to go back to my normal blogging self.  Pop's death is still so unbelievable to me that I'm not even sure I've really started grieving yet. I don't know how long, but I'm assuming I will be sad for quite a while.

But that doesn't mean my blog has to be.

So this is officially me jumping back on that temperamental blogging horse. I can't promise I'm going to be completely mope free for a while, but I am going to promise that I won't keep dwelling on my sadness here.

Because depressing blog posts aren't waterboarding by any means, but that still doesn't mean anyone deserves them.