I’ve noticed people handle endings in four different ways.
- Pre-Grip. People begin to grieve an ending long before the end occurs. They are gripped with anticipation and envision the pain. They mull it over. The positive side to this approach is the ending is rarely as hard as the preparation they put themselves through. The downside is the person isn’t present with life’s goodness due to expectation of a coming loss.
- Scheduled Grip. People put off any pre-ending preparation, thinking or feeling until the end actually occurs and they are forced to deal with it. They are gripped in real time by the change. The end can cause paralysis or a sense of shattering as they are jolted by tidal waves of emotion that roll over them until they maneuver through the ending and reach solid ground again. Life can sometimes come to a screeching halt during these periods with a slow and sluggish re-entry.
- Post-Grip. People yearn so much for the end, and the release an ending may bring, they deny any sorrow until long after the ending. Instead, they experience relief and focus on the positive side of the change. However, people are often surprised to find that later on they are gripped, grieving a loss from the past well after it occurs.
- Grip Dodgers. People deny themselves all emotion, either positive or negative, an ending may bring. Life is too busy and there is no time to slow down to feel or process. When this approach is used repeatedly, coping strategies begin to break down and the body eventually experiences a grip through short circuiting with the original cause difficult to identify. You can only dodge emotion so long before it takes over.
What would it take for you to experience an ending without being gripped?