For What Do We Grieve?
For What Do We Grieve? by Mary Christine for The Burning Platform
The obvious answer to that question is the loss of a loved one. Grief is not reserved only for the death of a loved one. We grieve over all kinds of losses. Our pets, our health, a body part, a house, a job loss, our dignity. The grief, and how we walk through it, will be different depending on the type of loss.
A few weeks ago, I had to go to the DMV to get a new drivers license. Going to the DMV is never fun but I was prepared for a wait. My license still had a year to go before it would expire but I needed an updated license with the correct address on it. It was correct in the database so I didn’t even consider I would need some additional piece of ID with the new address. After an hour wait, I was informed that I would need to produce that piece in order to get the new license. Fortunately, I could run to the bank not too far from there and have them print out the first page of my statement with the address and that would be sufficient. They gave me a place holder so that when I returned, I could jump to the front of the line. Slightly inconvenient but no big deal, really.
In my state, you have a choice to get the REAL ID compliant license or a regular license. In October of 2020, REAL ID will be a requirement in order to fly domestically, enter certain Federal Buildings, military bases and nuclear facilities. While I was waiting, I picked up the brochure that listed the documentation needed to acquire the REAL ID compliant license. If you already have one, then you know the requirements: birth certificate or passport, social security card or some legal document with ss number on it, two documents to show proof of state residency, and if applicable, documentation of name change. Basically, this is the same documentation that you would need to get a passport.
On the way home I was overtaken by a bit of road rage when someone sped up behind me, flashed their lights and hung on my tail until I moved out of the way into the right lane. I was in the process of passing, obviously not fast enough for them but I could not get over until I got around the cars next to me or dropped my speed and slipped behind them. I usually just shrug off these types of incidents, get over and out of the way. Not this time. As soon as they passed, I pulled out behind them and gave them some of their own medicine at which point they slammed on their brakes…in the fast lane…during the rush hour time of day. This type of behavior is not like me but today I was not myself. I followed them like that for 10 miles until I needed to turn.
As I drove down the country roads that lead to my house, I burst into tears. Believe me when I tell you that I am not a crier and my better half will attest to that. More behavior that is not like me. By the time I reached my driveway the tears had passed. But I was agitated and unable to pinpoint the reason for it. My husband was out of town on business and when I talked to him later that evening I told him what had happened, including the road rage incident. He wouldn’t scold me because for one thing, he knows that type of behavior is nearly unheard of coming from me. And for another, it would be the pot calling the kettle black. I emailed a friend to relate the same story. It bothered me that I could not pinpoint the reason for being upset.