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The Hopscotch of Loss

Friday June 16, 2023

Captain Grief was late for brunch, again. I could only assume that she had run into at least three innocents and a cat in a tree that she had to save, so I ordered for us. Just on cue, The Captain arrived looking much more like she was battling a box of Kleenex then a tree full of angry cats.

The Captain and I had a conversation over orange juice about linear thinking. It’s human nature not to go from A to B, but on a circuitous route, to zigzag as we learn and grow and let life happen around us. Things like finding your place in the world are never straightforward. You have to try and fail a lot and then always try just one more time.

Grief is like that. This is where our conversation started.

Kelly: You know, there has been a lot of renovations to the list of stages and emotional hurdles you hit when they are grieving. It’s like a hopscotch you can hop on every square, but you don’t ever have to do them in order! You can go from 1 to 5 to 2 to 7 to 1 if you felt so inclined and that would be OK.

Captain Grief (CG): Totally, it was just five stages but now it’s more like seven (as labeled here.) Honestly grief is so personal you could add dozens of other categories!

Kelly: Yes! (Pointing at her breakfast) You could go through a stage where you have waffles for breakfast for a month in remembrance of your loved one. We would call it the “waffle stage,” subtitled “the people at the grocery store think you’re weird” stage. Or you could go through a stage where you have to get a “mani-pedi” and a hairstyling every other day to make you feel like you are alive. We would call it “my life is falling apart, but I don’t want to look like it is” stage.

CG: You can play sad sappy songs all night long way too loud just to get through the night. We can call it “the neighbours kind of hate you” stage. Well, my neighbours hate me now anyways, too many sporadic villain attacks. I need a Batcave. Plus, I do a lot of weird shit when I’m having a grief heavy day. Kelly, what was the strangest thing you had to do to get through losing Kara?

Kelly and her cooking fixation

Kelly: There were a lot of things but the most obsessive was to remember and cook specific meals that she made just so I could be sure that I could have them. And that I could cook them for my son, hence the naming of “mama potatoes.” Maybe that’s why I spent so much time in the kitchen crying?

CG: Yeah think? (Looking at Kelly sardonically). That’s not so strange.

Kelly: Well, there’s something else I did. It was practical but a little silly. I kept all her boxer shorts, they’re super handy for wearing under dresses.

CG: Yes, (she shouts dramatically and everyone around us stares) Kara is still with you reaching out from the grave to make sure you don’t chafe!

Kelly: Wow. I’m absolutely sure that’s what she was thinking (rolls eyes). Most probably it was “oh my God Kelly would you just get rid of that crap?”

CG: Easy for her to say when she doesn’t have thighs anymore.

Kelly: (Cringing) True that. How about you? What was the strangest thing you had to do to get over your wife’s passing? What was her name again?

CG: Water Woman. She was kind of a Mariner’s deity.

Kelly: So, what did you do to remember her?

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

A Croc giving Captain Grief the stink eye!

CG: Crocodile wrestling! (Kelly is speechless). My wife had a thing about wrestling a crocodile after she went to Egypt. I booked a trip myself and I spent five days in “denial” (looks at Kelly)…

Kelly: Cute.

CG: Thanks, so I was searching for the local wildlife. Every I found one of those slippery suckers I did a capture and release for her.

Kelly: Hm, I guess that’s an option when you’re a grieving superhero. Did you get any scars?

CG: Just emotional ones.

Kelly: Fair enough, let’s finish breakfast.

CG: Ten four.

Kelly: What do you want to do after this Captain?

CG: The same thing we do every night Kelly, try and take over the world!

Kelly: Well in your scenario, I guess I don’t have to ask who is Pinky and who is The Brain.

CG: It’s OK Kelly, (patting Kelly’s hand) not everyone has a mind for strategy.

Kelly: Eat your waffle.

And now for your Friday throwback

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