The Jealousy of Grief

I wish I could say that grief has made me more sensitive to others. It hasn’t. It’s made me even more selfish. Just what I needed. Seriously. So frustrating! On my best day I have trouble seeing past myself. This is not helpful.

It’s also: normal. But, I still feel like a jerk.

What’s surprised me most so far about grieving my husband’s death has been the ugly selfish green eyed monster it’s brought with it. Something no one talks about.

Jealousy.

Ugly as it is- I’m jealous. Of date nights. Of family pics. Of absolutely boring posts about “honey do” lists done. I’m jealous of complaints about misunderstandings. Of vacations unsullied by tsunamis of sadness. I’m jealous of anniversaries and birthdays shared. Of plans made. I’m even jealous of arguments. (I’m

A freak- but I miss random arguments about politics and world events with my favorite person.) I miss having someone to nag at. (I’m a stellar nag, just sayin.) I’m jealous of dreams dreamed and fulfilled. Of grand kids and grand homes and grand ideas. I’m jealous of the little things, and the big things. All of them. I’m like that.

Selfish.

Or, maybe it’s because I miss those things. I wish I’d have appreciated them more when I had them, but I’m human, and like most humans I took them for granted, until they were gone.

I’m not a fan of selfishness or jealousy. I’ve worked hard to allow God to root them out of my heart, daily. But, here I am. Green eyed as I scroll through Facebook posts and messages. As I walk through Target and see couples arguing about toilet paper options. (That’s what happens when your date nights turn into Target runs.)

I don’t wish others didn’t have these things, or that I deserve them more or instead of them. I just wish I still had them, too.

At first I thought I was just extra special

Selfish jealous evil. (I mean, I am – in a human that sins everyday – kind of way.. but not any more so than most.) now I just think this is a part of grief few talk about. The jealous phase of grief. When you feel the loss acutely and realize the myriad little losses that it encompasses. My jealousy is part of my acceptance. It’s part of my grief. It’s not a place I want to set up home in, or a place where I find much peace- but it’s a place I think I need to travel through to the other side. Where I experience new joys and move towards a new life. One that holds my favorite person’s memory close and let’s go of all the little losses so I can embrace my future.

But first: jealousy and selfishness. I hate that.

If God’s strength can truly be made perfect in my weakness- I’m praying he can do the same even here- when I’m a jealous jerk.

Dear lord- help me to continue to deal with this overwhelming grief. Help me to continue to give myself the space to be messy and selfish. Help me to see the jealousy not just as character flaws but as part of the grieving process and to move past it, with your help. Bless those around me with good things- help me to take joy in them- which I do- but usually after a little jealous fit. I love you lord, and need you now as always! Amen

3 thoughts on “The Jealousy of Grief

  1. Georgia Skiles says:

    Once again you have written truth. Couples holding hands. A man in church with his arm around his wife. Going home alone. Being the “odd man out” when in a group. Even hesitating to invite a couple over for dinner because there is no other man to balance things out in conversation. Cooking for one – UGH! Hang in there, Tracey. It will get easier but it will never go away.

  2. Jeannie says:

    Ah, dear Tracey, may you be gentle to yourself when jealousy rears it’s head. You are loved! Look forward to giving you a hug – in less than a week! See you soon!

  3. Stephanie Morris says:

    Yeah. Only another one in your shoes really understands the depth of the feelings you share. And I know, it only scratches the surface. Time is a balm. Love you. Keep keeping it real. Ugly and all.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *