my patient told me that today was his 57th wedding anniversary. he then put his face in his hands and burst into soul wrenching sobs. i didn't see it coming, this man who has generally been so reserved in our encounters. but i did know that the past six months had been rough for him, culminating in his wife ultimately being diagnosed with an uncommon form of dementia. i felt so young watching him cry, glimpsing just briefly before he pulled himself back together the depth of his sadness.
grief does not wait for the last word to be spoken or the last breath to be drawn. grief rushes in well before, when you can no longer say some day i may have to face this, some day i may lose my spouse. grief finds you the moment you learn that your some day is today, now, and is your constant companion as your spouse slips away one forgotten day at a time.