I am in the bathroom getting ready for work. The hair dryer is trying to work its magic and I am in the middle of my thoughts. That's when my mom quietly knocks on the door. She doesn't want to wake the sleeping 10 year old is knocked out in my bed right behind her.
She walks in and says "I know this probably isn't the best time, but what's wrong with me?" I am utterly confused and try to read her body language and understand where this is coming from. Then she explains that she has not yet cried, like the big ugly kind of cry. Her mother died two weeks ago.
With a reassuring smile, I simply said "there is absolutely nothing wrong with you." I explained that it will hit her at different times and places. There is no predicting when or how that works, it just happens when it does. She had been preparing for her passing for the past several months. So she didn't realize that she was already grieving before my grandma left us. Each step in the preparation process for her passing, from looking at readings for the church down to picking out each piece of jewelry grandma would wear to her grave, was all part of her grieving.
My mom is just a daughter who is sad that her mom has died. Yet, she is also at peace knowing her mom is no longer in pain and is with my grandfather, sharing eternal happiness. Grief doesn't just happen once, is a process that is never ending and evolves with us over time.