The Hurting Time

I read a book not too long ago, The Little Paris Bookshop, by Nina George. It was beautiful and heartbreaking and heart-affirming and spoke to me on every page. But one passage stayed with me because of the deep truth it contained, a truth that every grieving person knows, a truth that lies within the shattered remains of a broken heart. It is a truth that is so very hard to give words to, hard to explain to anyone who’s never experienced the hurting time.

“Do you know there’s a halfway world between each ending and each new beginning? It’s called the hurting time, Jean Perdu. It’s a bog; it’s where your dreams and worries and forgotten plans gather. Your steps are heavier during that time. Don’t underestimate the transition, Jeanno, between farewell and new departure. Give yourself the time you need. Some thresholds are too wide to be taken in one stride.”

I struggle this time of year, struggle with waking up, struggle with going to sleep, struggle with finding joy in each day. Part of it is the change of the season, the turning back of the clock — I can never turn it far enough back to get me to Kevin. Part of it is the approaching holidays and the jarring juxtaposition of celebrating with my girl, but without her Daddy.

It’s the hurting time. It’s the threshold I’m still crossing.

I have words for it now.

Maybe that will help me struggle less.

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