What happened by the sea on Sunday has been a long time coming. As I knelt in the sand pouring my heart into a sweaty cotton t-shirt the water lapped at my feet and the release was tangible. I haven’t cried that hard in over a month and I don’t really know why.
After each game of frisbee I’ve played at tournaments since Liane’s death I’ve shared her story. After games the two teams come together and each captain talks about the game and his/her team’s experience of it. It is a unique setting in sporting terms, and as progressive as it is unusual. After the captains speak I try to talk to the opposing team and give each player a yellow LianeUp band. I tell the story of the bands, the four messages on them and how I try to live a life of positivity and growth in the face of a constant and deep pain. It’s a hard talk to give. It’s deeply emotional and some times, more than others, it jars me. That happened on Sunday.
I could feel the pain rising as a spoke. I was telling strangers about my dead wife and how they could face and get through anything with enough love and determination. I left the circle and sat with my team. I couldn’t focus. I was scrambled. I walked away and broke. I covered my face with a tshirt and bawled. It felt animalistic, waves of raw emotion crashing through me, out of me. Two teammates saw me and came to hold me. A hand on a knee and an arm around a shoulder. Human contact. Love. And as quickly as it had barrelled in the storm gently passed. We got into the sea and swam.
I feel I need to access that well of grief more often. To wallow in it. To face it. To trigger the pain and plunge under the surface. It’s such a big part of me, ignoring it - as I think I have been lately - simply isn’t heathy.