In the early 1990s, there was a Gospel song made popular by Gospel legend, Darryl Coley, with the title, “When Sunday Comes.” The lyrics to the song go a little something like this: “when Sunday comes, my troubles gone. As soon as it gets here, I’ll have a new song. I won’t have to cry no more. All of my heartaches will be left behind.” The lyrics and music sound good, and what is portrayed within the construct of the lyrics may be true for some. For me, not so much.
In fact, since my grandmother left this earth in May of this year, Sunday has become my least favorite day of the week. Like some think of Mondays, Sunday has become the day I wish I could just skip right over. All over the world, Sunday is the day most families gather at the home of the matriarch to break bread together, to laugh and share hugs, and speak about the events of the previous week, the time to plan family events for the future.
At the end of the gathering is when family members gather leftovers to carry home to their respective homes, in hopes of savoring the taste of the food and the memories made with the matriarch, and feeling the warmth of her hands and embraces. My grandmother and I spoke on the phone every Sunday. Sometimes we would have morning calls, sometimes evening, and sometimes we would have both. Once the matriarch dies, those shared moments amongst family seemingly die along with her. Everyone goes on his or her way, getting by the best they know-how. The phone calls and visits either stop or come less and less frequently. Everyone deals with grief differently. For some, it may appear as though they are not dealing with it at all. Whereas others may appear to wear it all on their shoulders, outwardly. Grief manifests itself in various ways.
My grandmother was a woman of few words. However, when she did speak, she knew how to command a room. Today is Sunday, September 12, 2021. Tomorrow is my birthday. Today has become especially difficult for me. Not only because it is Sunday, but also because tomorrow, I am dreading the feeling of not hearing my phone ring with my grandmother’s name glowing on the Caller ID and picking up to hear her singing comedically on the other end, her rendition of the birthday song. Tomorrow will be the first time in my life that I will not receive a phone call from her on my birthday. Today, I have had several phone calls from individuals wanting to invite me to eat for my birthday. Unfortunately, I declined each one of them.
As this day grew nearer, I knew I was not feeling very celebratory. This past Friday, I forced myself to go to dinner. In doing so, I also forced myself to invite a friend to join me. Though I’m glad I went to dinner and enjoyed myself, I could not help but become anxious about the coming days and my feelings that were being suppressed. Today I tried taking a shower to help relax and ease my mind. Instead, that is where all my emotions just came pouring out. It was at that time I remembered reading something about taking a shower and imagining the water washing all your cares and worries down the drain. It works, if even for mere moments. Just let it all out.
“It is extremely difficult to help someone over a hill you have never climbed before.” – Just Taamico
It has been remarked about my being a great listener. If I must say so myself, I’m good with helping others channel through their grief and issues. Yet, harder on myself. Recently on my podcast, I interviewed someone who shared how he has coped with grief in his life. During the interview, he shared how I had helped him to overcome some obstacles in his life. What I have to offer comes innately. Oftentimes, I listen and share and do not really know who is actually paying attention and being receptive. Speaking with others about their grief is helpful for me as well, though it does not make me void of it. It is extremely difficult to help someone over a hill you have never climbed before.
When Sunday comes around again, use that time to reach out to individuals you may not normally reach out to. You never know who may need a listening ear or just know someone is thinking of them and cares. Tomorrow, on my birthday, as therapy for myself, I believe I’ll take a drive to my grandmother’s gravesite and leave flowers for her on my birthday. All of these emotions are new, and I will continue to tackle them as they come, every time Sunday comes around again.
Photos: Courtesy of Pixabay