Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Good Grief. . .

So in my never-ending stupidity I signed up to take a class called The Wisdom of Grief.


Well if wisdom about such things were my forte, I wouldn't be here writing this blog post today - now would I?

I suppose I thought I might learn something.  I suppose I thought I wouldn't mind getting out of the office one Friday afternoon a month.  I suppose I thought it would look good on a resume.  I suppose I thought I would feel like less of an impostor in the grief field if I did something that might make me the teensiest-bit worthy of the mountain of compliments that families tend to heap on me when I do nothing more than help them through the funeral of a loved one.

When families thank me for muddling through my job in my intuitive clumsical way. . .

Well turns out that my impostor status was quickly revealed at our very first class, however, as the facilitator handed us each a journal and asked us to jot down our feelings about a time we had journeyed with someone who needed our help.  And not only did we have to write about this journey, she told us we should be prepared to share our journey with the rest of the class.

Good Grief!

Why didn't anyone tell me that passing Sympathy 101 was a pre-requisite to this Wisdom of Grief course?  I have no journeys to share! (Pub crawls, maybe, but bonafide journeys????)

Does this woman not read my blog? Doesn't she know that I never pick up a phone to call a friend?  That everything in my life is always all about moi?  Would she be shocked to learn that I don't even send birthday cards to my own flesh and blood?  That I don't know how to share a cup of tea?

And, as if things weren't bad enough, the rest of my classmates seemed to be happily sharing.

Compassion-filled journey stories.

In a circle.

One by one.

In clockwise fashion.

Working their way to me.


And the tighter that grief circle got, the larger the Wisdom of Making up a Cockamamie Story loomed  in my mind and I resigned myself to the fact that I now needed to add the words Lied in Grief Course to my resume  . . .

Friend's divorce?  Forget it. . . classmate #2 used that one already.  Losing a parent?  Too trite.  Alcoholic family member?  One look at me and they'd see impostor status there as well. .  .

The circle tightened.

Good grief, Charlie Brown, I've got it!

Mental illness!    I have recently journeyed with someone through mental illness!  They don't need to know that the illness is my very own . . right here. .  .and now. . . 'cause a minute ago I was going stark-staring-out-of-my-lunatic-mind but have somehow miraculously journeyed myself back in . . .

With a little luck.

And a timer.

Announcing the end of the class. . .

And, yes, I know clumsical is not a word, but I like it.  And I'll continue using it to my heart's content. . .