Losing a parent is the worst pain imaginable. It’s something I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy. We all know death is a part of life, but this type of pain hits you differently when it’s your parent. Your parent is the closest person to you on this earth. Even if you have a strained relationship, it’s still going to break you – especially, if you were never able to address the issues that bothered you while they were alive. Now, those answers are resting in the grave. Bitterness will kill you more than the hatred for the other person.
In the black community, there are a lot of unspoken topics and death is certainly one of them; from executing final wishes, keeping the family together, and how to cope once that loved one is gone. Whenever a loved one dies, everyone is there for you during the denial and isolation stage, and you’ll be forced to wrap your head around what actually happened. Like, did the doctor really just say they’re gone? I just spoke to them – that can’t be true!
Then comes those moments when you have a lot of family and friends around, but honestly speaking, you just want to be left alone. You’re trying to come to terms with what the hell just happened. Like, Jesus, am I being punked right now? If you don’t have help – here comes the hard part – no one tells you about making the funeral arrangements. This is a daunting task in itself, as if you’re pouring salt on your wound all over again. Next comes the funeral – when the truth really sets in – and no, you’re not dreaming. This is your new reality, and a piece of your heart is gone.
Now, if you’re a person of faith, the whole ordeal will have you questioning everything – mainly because you’re hurt and are trying to rationalize what has just transpired. You’ll feel angry during the bargaining phase of grief – god forbid if your loved one died of an illness. The reason why I say this is because grief will convince you that you didn’t pray hard enough, or that there was something more you could’ve done. I experienced these feelings when my father passed. I felt that if I had prayed a little harder, forced him to adhere to his doctor’s advice sooner, then he would’ve remained on earth just a little longer. Grief will have you questioning everything, throwing all logic out the window. I was angry because Man had me believing he could live forever. I had to accept that he lived his life and completed every task asked of him.
Once I came to this realization, the healing started. Do I have bad days? Of course! There were some days I didn’t want to get of bed. There are still certain things I can’t do, because it’s just too painful. But I grow stronger every day, because I know he wouldn’t want me to live in misery. I’m finally in a place where I can talk about him without crying.
For all of those who have recently lost someone close, believe me, it doesn’t happen overnight, but you’ll be able to smile again. I promise! This is my testimony. There are better days on the horizon. I’ll pray for us all, because I know there will forever be a void that won’t be filled.
This feature was submitted by KD Williams
KD Williams is an Afrocentric, eclectic, and curvy millennial who wants to change the narrative in media. “Oftentimes minorities are misrepresented in media, and I want to change that,” she says. As Tupac stated: In order to change the world, we must change ourselves. She also enjoys writing about the advancement of her generation, in addition to other relevant subjects within the realms of culture, news, and entertainment.