• Des Tiny


I have had many endings in my life and each has shown me a different shade of grief. Endings come in many forms, like the end of exams or selling a house, but most of us associate endings with tragedy or heart ache such as the end of a marriage or a life. This past month I have had my fair share of endings. I find myself reflecting on the idea of endings and how it presents in so many fascinating ways. It’s been a real trip down memory lane as I have recounted my many endings, reflected how they have contributed to my growth, what new beginnings have come in and how I have recovered.

The poet Nayyirah Waheed writes “I don’t pay attention to the world ending. It has ended for me many times and began again in the morning”. I find strength in her words, but I have to say some mornings I haven’t really felt like getting up because I know the world is still spinning but I feel like mine still hasn’t begun again. Sometimes when the ending takes you by surprise, it takes you a moment or five to get back to center.

This month I find myself grieving not only what was but what never was and what could have been or what will never be. It’s a grand big ball that sits in my solar plexus and it feels heavy yet empty and at times overwhelming

This isn’t the first time I have experienced an ending but it is the first parent I have lost and although my father and I were estranged the sadness has been like a wave that you don’t see coming and it knocks you over and takes you by complete surprise. You start sifting through memories and sorting through thoughts of “should of, why not, how come” etc. So many unknowns, so many years gone by and the only thing I can do is piece together memories from various others and some of my own vague memories to make a collage of what my biological father may have been like so that I may remember him and say goodbye.

This ending has come with a sweet new beginning in tandem, I have discovered my half-sister who is just the most wonderful person and is a definite bright light during this time of sadness. We have started sharing what we have and it feels like a fresh start to a past life so shrouded in unknowns, mysteries and pain.

Shortly before I received the news of my father’s passing, I experienced another ending, I experienced an ending of a relationship. Although a young relationship, I find myself mourning the loss of falling in love and feeling like I had made someone’s day just by being around. Oh, how sweet it was until it wasn’t. I do wish we had been given more time together but I am not surprised our young little love story didn’t survive what life threw at us. Nothing was conventional about the way we met; and there were plenty of fun “firsts” together but effectively nothing was conventional about what was thrown at us either. Perhaps when we are used to overcoming adversity alone, as so many of us with a bit of life experience are, it is sometimes better to cross life changing bridges on your own and if our bridges end on the same shore… well let’s see if we look in the direction of the other, who knows.

The two endings happened in such quick succession that it’s hard for me to tell the difference between the feelings of either ending, I just knowing that I am experiencing a few different shades of grief at the same time. There has been lots of emotions and when they collied I found myself sifting through feelings such as abandonment, disappointment, anger and sadness to name but a few. There is no doubt I am on a journey and I am grieving not only what was but what never was and what could have been or what will never be.

It’s a process to move through and we draw on our resources from within and around us. Some of us do it one way while others do it another way. There is no right or wrong way to experience your grief because this is your ending and you get to experience it how you want to experience it. What doesn’t change is that at the end of each ending, without a doubt is a new beginning and with a large helping of acceptance and letting go I will find my peace. It is what makes this life so beautiful because without endings nothing can begin (again).

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