Stages of Grief, But Not

by | Jul 14, 2016 | Arts and Culture

Experts say there are 5 stages of grief: denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance.

1. This couldn’t be happening again. Please, God, tell me not another hashtag (denial).

2. Yep, it happened yet again. Why? And I have to leave my house, pretend I’m not angry, smile while being one of few, and go on about my day. I’m sick of faking it (anger).

3. Can people try to understand why we’re angry? How do we get you to understand we don’t deserve to be treated like animals? If they can escort (and stop to get food for) someone who escaped after killing nine people in a church, can’t they at least not shoot to kill us like we’re animals? What do I need to do to make people understand so they’ll want to fight beside us and stick up for us (bargaining)?

4. I can’t bring children into the world to be potential shooting targets. Screw worrying about PCOS, I’m worried about the police. I’m worried about them being a threat simply because they have dark skin. I don’t really see myself being around people right now because I’m angry. I’m really trying not to have stereotypes because that’s counterproductive, but that’s unlike me. I never had them. I respect people in uniform because they risk their lives every day. But for every image I see of them doing their job, I read stories of my friends being pulled over because they fit a description, or prepared to start a war with protestors using their right to assemble.

I can’t stop thinking about the 6-year-old who saw her father get murdered in cold blood. About the children, their father won’t see again. About people’s reactions, quick to say they deserve it. The people who I called friends who are silent about this, but loud about everything else.

To me, it shows they don’t care. The most important aspect of who I am can have me killed, and they would blame it on my “sassy” attitude or say “we don’t really know the full story.” To simply put it, they wouldn’t care. Should I stop? Should I turn cold? I don’t want to. This should give me strength to fight harder, but honestly, I want to hide from the world right now (depression).

It’s been a weird week, going through this cycle. It kind of goes around and around, with new hashtags being introduced throughout the week. New conspiracy theories saying those who are fighting to live and be treated with respect are trying to start a war that we’re actually trying to end. My thinking has been altered and I hate it. It’s business as usual mostly, but the events still weigh heavy. Is this a new normal (I guess we call this acceptance)?

There are five stages of grief, experts say denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance. I’ve experienced all five, one of five, and two of five at the same time over the last week, some points stronger than others. Is this a new normal, or will I be fine after a while?

I don’t know, to be honest.