Sometimes it’s an unwanted visitor, slyly creeping into the safety and security of your home. You feel the coldness, and it’s hard to fill the hole it leaves you with after it takes everything that you hold dear. The hold is barren and dry, spreading darkness into your very depths.
Other times, it’s like an old and dear friend. It welcomes you into its arms, into what feels like a long awaited embrace. It allows you to say goodbye. It comforts you, wiping the tears from your eyes and looking at you with a kind smile as it tells you you’ll be okay.
When it first hits, you’re winded and can’t breathe. If I had to compare the feeling, it’s almost like you’re drowning. You gasp to get whatever air you can get into your chest, and then you feel it, the pain that rips through you. The silence is louder than anything you’ve ever heard, but when you open your mouth, nothing comes out. It’s a wordless cry, a scream that’s robbed of sound but is felt so deeply. Your hands clutch wildly; the weight of your loneliness hits, and you hold yourself as if that will stop you from breaking and keep you from falling apart. It does bring you the smallest of comforts for a while.
Time passes, but not fast enough for you to forget or to heal. In fact, while time carries on at a fast pace for others, it slows to a crawl for you, like some form of cruel torture, forcing you to face the pain that feels like its killing you. You become a stranger, a ghost in a world devoid of color. A ghost wading in gray while others live in worlds of reds, yellows, and vibrant blues.
The hardest part is finally saying goodbye. They were holding your hand as you fell apart. Their coldness kept you warm, a welcome comfort in your world of gray, and yet a part of you knew this day would come. Like a child outgrowing an old toy, you feel your hand slipping out of theirs, and it dawns on you that you haven’t been comforted by the one you lost but by the one who took them away from you. Death has held you in its cold embrace with feigned warmth, a warmth you now crave and cannot live without. It has clung to you like a stench, an odor that is not pleasant, and yet you’ve entertained it because it reminds you of memories too painful to lose. But you realise it’s time to let go, to say a final goodbye to your unwanted friend and the ghost you used to be.
It does get easier. It’s like the universe is granting you mercy for making you suffer. However, it won’t allow you to forget. The drowning does come along with the soundless cries and whispers of memories too painful to forget, but it does get easier, and slowly the grays will turn to blues and the blues to reds, and little by little, color will return to your life once more.