"They are Building a Coffin Your Size."
She feels the smooth, wooden floor beneath her knees, and then the palms of her hands as it meets the skin of her cheek. She hopes that she is fainting, but, to her disappointment, she does not lose consciousness. The waves of pain that had only been lapping at her before are now rearing high up and washing over her head, threatening to pull her under. She will not resurface.
The pain that she has experienced is one that holds so great a fierceness and so intense a fire she does not know if she will ever be the person she was. Will the fire rekindle in her eyes? Will she laugh like she used to or will her voice forever hold a hollow tone? Will she be able to look at a picture the same way or hear a song that reminds her of him? Probably not, for death is a violent thing, especially when it is specifically violent. So tragically hit by a car, his face was smashed and his body bruised. Purple, black, yellow, and red cover the surface of pale skin. A non-recognizable face that holds cold, empty eyes stares back at her. At first she feels like a dead light bulb in a bucket of water and then, suddenly, the water is dumped out and the light bulb shatters.
"The trauma of this accidental death gives a wide range of feelings that seemingly collide all at once," (Buckingham 98). Denial and shock, among other feelings, tend to fill one with a sort of unawareness. To her, death had always been an idea that has seemed so far away and obscure. Now, here with his body lying open on the table, death is more real to her than anything. In reality, she cannot deny that her friend has no life in his body, for he is not breathing. With a gruesomely sliced open head, a once bright mind spilling out, it should be clear to her that his heart no longer beats. While it may be obvious in one's head and in fact, the shock that is experienced is a devastating thing. This shock allows denial and doubt to enter in even though it is obvious that a friend's soul has been lost. The shock suffocates her body like a numb blanket; it dulls her senses and makes her feel as though any emotion she once held has been sucked away. The emotional drain of denial and shock that one experiences is only followed by feelings such as fear, depression, and utter sorrow.
Because these emotions have rushed through her all at once, her body may experience a literal, physical pain. After the shock passes, there is a feeling of "dealing with two bodies, that of the dead person being taken away from you and your own. Knowing that physical contact is forever lost from the person who has died is a devastating blow physically," (Dower 77). When she wakes up in the morning, she may find that the only thing she wants to do is sleep. There may also be a tightness in the chest similar to that of drowning. She can't catch her breath just right and as much as she tries it always eludes her. Panic will grip and cause heart flutters as a burning sensation enters into the heart. Nausea will come about and feel as though the pain of loss has punched a hole into one's stomach. These pains may be minimal at first, but a sharp feeling of physical torment, un-like any other, will clutch the very core of the body and spirit.
It is a crippling thing, this sensation that a huge hole had been punched through the chest, excising the most vital organs and leaving ragged, unhealed gashes around the edges that continue to throb and bleed despite the passage of time. Rationally, she knows her lungs must still be intact, yet she gasps for air and her head spins as though her efforts yield her nothing. Her heart must still be beating, too, but she can't hear the sound of her pulse in her ears; her hands feel blue with cold. She curls inward, hugging her ribs to hold herself together. She scrambles for her numbness, her denial, but it evades her.
The agony attacks in cramps, itches, headaches, joint pain, appetite change, and other harrowing sensations. Even as Elbert Hubbard once said, "The cure for grief is motion," (Dower 78) she cannot seem to move. She cannot seem to do anything. But as any person will do anything to ease searing pain, she will begin to shift in her grieving sleep. Here eyelids will be forced to open and the sores that have grazed at her lashes will fall off.
She will begin to move, talk, and walk. Will it change anything? Perhaps the physical pains will diminish and the feelings of sorrow and sadness will lessen, but a new beast will be released. This beast is called hatred and it carries a bottle of buttered rage. This monster will scratch at those who love and care for her the most. It will tear down those who have worked so hard to help her heal. It will ravage the wall of glass that she has so carefully built around herself and instead build up a wall of brick sealed with concrete. All of a sudden she is mad as hell, unleashing her anger at those around her, herself, and the dead. Can he hear her? Can he feel her rage and hear her piercing screams of ire? The only thing she wants to do is strangle him for dying, but he has already met his Maker. She wants to destroy the one that hit him, but they too, are gone. Out of excuses and out of people to blame, she turns to her own self-misery.
She wonders what could possibly be left. Can one look forward to the future when they can only think of the past? To grieve beyond the emotional shock and denial that tears through the stomach is truly a difficult thing. To un break the bones of a deep, gnawing pain seems near impossible while being pushed and pulled against a rage seems near effortless. Yet, through this she has come to a conclusion that her dear friend, whom she thought belonged to her, really does not. She reaches a painful realization that the person she has held so tightly to must be released. The only thing that she can now take solace in is that time does, indeed, pass. It passes even when it seems impossible and even when each tick of the second hand aches like the pulse of blood behind the bruise. It passes unevenly, in strange lurches and dragging lulls, but it does pass. In time, she will find that she will be able to live through it. The pain perhaps will not weaken over time, but rather she will grow strong enough to bear it. Perhaps I will grow strong enough to bear it. How will I bear it, though, when I have to tell his mama that her baby boy isn't coming home tonight? How will I explain it when the rainbow begins to weep color all over the streets? Will the hurt truly pass? It will as I skip through purple puddles with faces of clocks in them and watch them drown away along with my sorrows and his face. Only then will it pass and that will be never.