There is a sociolinguistic theory that assigns primacy to those emotions which have the most derrivative words, the thinking being that if we have so many words for it then it must be key to our understanding of our language and ourselves.
And then there is ‘grief’.
There is a strange language that we don’t use in everyday life that seems to be suddenly and pervasivly availible to you the moment that somebody dies, it is as though all the cliches and nightmares you’ve had of that moment are no longer spectres but real and unwakeable. The muttered “I keep thinking she’ll walk through the door” and “this feels like a dream” that you have seen so many times in bad films and worse novels is something that is suddenly so horribly true that you cannot help but apologize to an author you never liked because those really are the only words.
There are the same few words that we use time and time again for this moment, the same phrases, in books and newspapers, movies and poems that you think so old and so overused – and they become not faulty literary devices, but an indication of the sheer and utter humanity that we all share when somebody dies. That we are so human that we can’t find any other words than the ones that we have always used, to tell the people we have always known, that there is nothing but grief.
There is much sadness here friends, my heart is heavy but I am ok. I wanted to thank all of you for your words that buoyed me and moved me forward through the dream and to the end where I may not have better words, but I do better understand those that we use.