How I Watched My Father Die in Front of Me

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Grief is not unlike being lost out at sea; waves of different emotions continuously crash over you and you feel as if the current will sweep you out even farther from what you once thought was normal. Grief sometimes manifests itself into something a lot darker. Sometimes it turns into something that makes you feel emotions you are unfamiliar and uncomfortable with, and the normal stages of grief can manifest into depression. I was fourteen when my father died. I knew what loss and grief felt like before then – I lost my aunt only four months before my dad died in November 2005 and each year before that, I lost my Gramps and uncle. This time, however, my grief was a lot different; I was not sad all the time, as people expected me to be. I rarely cried and I stopped sleeping. I was up half the night, tossing and turning. I had to force myself to get out of bed every morning because I was exhausted and numb. Everyone around me thought I was coping so well because I became an amazing actress. I would plaster on a fake smile, go out with friends and continue to go to school like I was fine. On the inside, however, I was crushed under the weight of my depression and constant numbness. Things that used to give me pleasure were now tasks that took what little energy I had away from me; I stopped writing and had to force myself to go out with friends to “keep up with appearances.” I stopped eating and lost weight – once again, I had to force myself to eat to keep everyone around me from thinking that there was something wrong. By the year anniversary of my dad’s death, I couldn’t take the depression any longer. I could no longer recognize the girl in the mirror; a once happy, full of life girl was now paled by grief and sadness. I was completely lost under wave after wave of crushing sadness and I had no way of getting out. If you had told me before my dad died that I would feel like this, I would have laughed and thought you were crazy. But there I was, a year after my...
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