Grief

Grief is a strange creature. Everyone feels it differently. Nor is there a way of showing grief that is out of the ordinary. It is one of the few examples of human emotion for which there is no baseline.

There are many traditional ways of dealing with it. From the keening in Scotland to the second lines in New Orleans, every culture has an expectation for mourning. The somber Catholic funeral to the celebration of their life in an Irish wake. Some groups of aboriginals ban the use of the deceased’s name for a period of time. No group, no cross-section of any society grieves in the same way.

My personal favorites are the second lines of New Orleans and the Irish Wake.

No one should look down on another for how they grieve. But there are unfortunate expectations in much of my society. For women to weep and for men to be stoic rocks. There are some who sneer at those who act outside expectations.

Ignore these people. They don’t have the empathy appropriate to help you. Strangely, it also might be a manifestation of their grief. Just let their actions go.

Still, I found myself mourning in a different way when my father died. I found solace in remembering all the good he did in it. Even when we did not get along, I could respect what my father did with his life. I could recognize the morality of his deeds.

Dad worked in the Pharmaceutical industry. He had a Masters in Pharmacology and an MBA. Dad was in marketing, but also knew the medications he was selling inside out. He pushed some products for very personal reasons.

He made it a personal crusade to get a vaccine for meningitis on the market. That may seem like an odd thing to make a private cause, but I had almost died of that disease at eight-months-old. Dad never wanted another parent to have to go through the stress and worry, the continued uncertainty of long-term consequences, that my illness caused.

When Dad retired from working for more prominent corporations, he set up a consultancy. He would pick and chose who he took on as a client based on how much good the project could produce.

In a way, my grief comes from how proud I am of the moral man my Father was. He could be rigid and stubborn, even harsh. Still, he acted from a core of right and wrong that I cannot deny, though I saw it as strictly black and white.

In a way, most of my grief comes from losing that rudder of black and white, right or wrong, morality in my life. I am a person who lives in the greys. Not a criminal, but someone who recognizes that crimes can be committed from good intentions.

Did I cry over the loss of my father? Yes. Many around me, however, may have seen me as stoic. I was not. I never kept the grief I felt locked in. It was always there, from when I heard he had advanced lung cancer.

And it will be with me for years to come. What I did do is accept the grief as a part of who I am rather than vocal or public expressions, or rock-faced stoicism.

There is only one wrong way to grieve. That is to deny the grief or lock it away and refuse to face it. When you lose someone, that loss will forever be a part of you.

Hiatus and the reasons behind it.

 

Hello. I am back, in a way. I apologize for the hiatus and will be doing my best to post more regularly. You, my fans, deserve an explanation as to what has been happening and what has been coming. In this post I will cover the ‘bad’ that has been weighing me down, my next post will be a discussion on that, and the final post will be the ‘good’ I have been working on.

My father was diagnosed with stage three lung cancer just before Christmas. I was told in mid-January. My relationship with Dad was always tumultuous and difficult. I always loved and respected my Dad, but there were times when I could not be in the same room as him.

I still love him, even now he is gone.

I had a trip planned to the US, so I could go and work with some of my collaborators. Meet with my mentor. Work on a project we had going in the background. Get back on track. I saw him the night before I left, and he was not as well as I hoped. He made me swear I would stay for the trip and push through and work on everything no matter what happened.

I saw him the morning I flew out. I said my goodbye. I could tell from his insistence that he was happy with what I was doing. It was the first time in my life I felt he approved of me.

I left on the 12th of June. Dad passed on the 20th of June from Pneumonia. He died with his sister, daughters, and wife at his side.

I kept my word to him and did my best to be useful for the rest of my trip. I finished my share of two collaborations and a short story while on the trip. (These are currently at the tender mercy of my editors)

But I still feel a gaping hole with him gone. I miss the feeling of a safety net for advice in specific areas. I even miss the arguments we had due to our different politics. He was one of the four most influential people in making me, well, me.

May the gods have recognized him and accepted him into their halls.

Next time, I will post on grief. After that, I will post something on the ‘good’ that has been chewing into my time like an evil caterpillar. I hope you all see the butterfly potential I do.

Peace

The beagles are good at indicating when the missus is about to have an epileptic seizure, so they get to sit in the bathroom with her while she has a shower. Afterwards, they always seem so peaceful. Today it even extended to Breena sharing her beanbag.

Sulking

Breena really can get sulky while waiting for the missus to feed her. My partner turned around and caught this look while cooking the beagles’ breakfast.

You may have noticed that most of the posts about our beagles involve food in some way. This is because they are beagles, and there are only four things that matter to beagles: food, affection, sleep, and food.

The burned tongue teaches best

Dogs need vegetable matter, not just meat, so these two get a bit of porridge for breakfast. One day, I had a migraine and needed to sit down, so I gave it to them before it had a chance to cool down, thinking that my wonderful beagles were smart enough to leave it alone for a bit. Breena was apparently too hungry and burned her tongue, so when I got up because I heard her whimpering, I was treated to the sight of a beagle who was afraid of food. This sight happened every day for a month, and she is still cautious about her porridge.

Something to tide you over.

Sorry everyone, I have hit a few problems and my books are running late(r) than I or, I imagine, any of you wanted. I should start posting snippets from the next 3 Mongrelverse books again next week. These are Through the Veil, book one of Good Deeds and Bad Company, Mongrel’s Tooth and Consequences, Book 2 of Breed Matters, and Forsaken Motherhood, Book 2 of Cursed Mother.

As to the delays? Well, let’s just say that life can bowl you a wrong’un, a flipper and a slider. Sometimes it seems to have the bowlers line up in a convey too, dammit. ( sorry, Cricket terms here, but I am Aussie, so it seemed right. Hmm. American terms… A Pitching machine throwing you a stream of curveballs maybe?)

In the meantime here are a couple of books to help tide you over… In a setting I should be contributing something to by the end of July, if not earlier.

Without further ado, welcome to the Badger Hole Bar, They can be found through this link

Book 1: Through the Badger Hole

Desolation and grief can leave you floating, unable to find a new shape to your existence.

Who knew that it was possible to be shocked out of the morass of sorrow by a well-timed push?!

Madrik was reeling from the loss of his family and unable to find his way into the new reality. Then something happened that sent him further than he ever thought to travel. A new life, in a new dimension!

This is a place where problems are solved, and life is continually changing. Come in, put your feet up, and join the crew that Madrik is collecting in this shared universe.

Be amused and challenged, touched and enthralled.

Welcome to the Badger Hole Bar!

Book 2: Grand Opening

Chaos and confusion. The tidal wave of tension before release.

The Badger Hole Bar is having its Grand Opening. Madrik and his new team have been frantic. Trying to get everything ready in time is hard enough, but there are problems.

Of course, it might help if the BHB would stop rearranging the architecture, or no new emergencies came up. Since that would be an impossible situation, they will just have to do what they can and leave the rest to fate, luck, or whatever.

That just leaves one main worry…

What if no one comes?