So I find myself at the computer with spare time and a warming drink and an affectionate cat who is headbutting my typing fingers. I contemplate my future unemployment (posssible but probable, cuts in public spending FTW!) just as I scour listings for my ideal job, which is (don't laugh) to work as a therapist in institutions which support the dying and those they leave behind.
Death is cruel, yes. It leaves such absences, such hollowness in its wake. It takes away what we don't want to let go of, lose or give up. It's been 21 years since my father's death but I still grieve.
But death is kind too. The death of hospices that unlocks bodies, smoothes brows, unworks the knots of suffering. I am enormously kind too, most of all when I travel in the Uderwrold.
I may lack the strength to phone the Council and complain about the heating to another disinterested individual, or open and dispatch post in a timely manner - but being present and unflinching nd unafraid in the face of grief and darkness is something part hobby, part natural talent, part piece de resistance of my modest employability skillset.
Grief and loss has changed the face of me as indelibly as sea alters rock. It might as well be tattooed on my skin, and others who have carried the same backpacks of loss, travelled in the same circles - these are in the realest way my tribe. Our party smalltalk may be awful, but their voices resonate at the deepest part of me and bring me enormous solace.
I've been reading After Iris today. It is all the things I like best - poignant and beautifully written, one of my new favourite blogs.