A Grief Observed
In his book, A Grief Observed, C.S. Lewis addresses many physical, psychological, and behavioral dimensions of grief. He describes grief as a sort of fear sensation, with the same breathless unease and unrest in the stomach. It can be easy to see why grief would feel like fear. Both are strong physical as well as psychological emotions that cause great anxiety and tension in the body and mind. C.S. Lewis describes the tearfulness –the un-masculine and often revealing side, one that he says doesn’t always do the memory of a person justice, as well as the tearless side –the one where everyone questions why you aren’t engrossed in sadness. He implies a lack of behavior; a great change in what one wants to do. Simple tasks become very difficult to complete. A grown man more recluse and weary, unable to tackle what once was accomplished in the beginning of a day.
C.S. Lewis talks about how he cannot address his grief with his young sons due to an overwhelming sense of embarrassment. There is a sense of responsibility put on the shoulders of men of every age when they face loss or death. As a ‘man’, one is not supposed to show weakness or sadness. Lewis feels if he shows his grief to his son’s he has somehow faltered as a father. That there is a sort of shame in preventing one’s own happiness at any age. He speaks about misery’s shadow… the fact that not only must one grieve, but one must know he is grieving. Part of this is everyone around knowing you are grieving, deciding in their heads when they meet you whether to say something or not about your loss. He feels like a warning to young married couple’s of their future and an inconvenience to friends around him now.
Bereavement (loss of a spouse) is one of the most universal and integral parts of the experience of love. Marriage is a dance of ups and downs, with major life milestones throughout. Death is the marriage dance interrupted. I feel like the idea of...
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