Issue 3.6 – Melancholy

How are you doing, Catherine?” Debra asked as she approached the hunched over and exhausted looking woman in the lobby. Catherine raised her head to meet Debra’s eyes and offered a weak smile. “I’m ok I suppose. Just came to check on dad. He has been impossible to get a hold of and I think something might be wrong.”

Debra nodded. “I’ve been worried about Charlie myself. He just hasn’t been the same since your mother passed.” “None of us have been the same really,” Catherine said with tears in her eyes. “It’s been extremely hard.” Debra gave Catherine a hug, but Catherine stood there coldly. She didn’t break down or cry, she just remained stoically still.

“I suggested he talk to a grief counsellor and I gave him some information. Maybe you can see if he has followed through with booking an appointment when you’re upstairs with him,” Debra offered. “Maybe,” Catherine said, making her way to the elevator.

Debra followed behind, slightly disturbed by Catherine’s own melancholy. She couldn’t help but wonder if Charlie’s grief might be compounded by seeing his own daughter so upset and seemingly unable to work through her own grief. It was obvious that the family was struggling and needed resources, but what more could be done? Debra racked her brain for other things she could offer to them, but wasn’t sure they were ready to accept it. This was always the hardest part of her job, seeing people in so much pain with resources at hand, but without the energy to act. Grief was such a horrible beast.

“I want you to know that if you do need anything, anything at all Catherine, I’m here for both Charlie AND you,” Debra placed her hand on Catherine’s arm. Catherine smiled a little. “I know. Right now I’m just so worried. I need to know that dad is ok.”

“And he likely needs to know that you are ok too,” Debra said, watching Catherine step into the elevator looking completely dejected.

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Everyone grieves differently, and the process can take some time. Grief shared by family members can be more complicated, as individual processes can affect each other. Dynamics can be especially hard to navigate during this sensitive time.

What are your thoughts on this week’s story? Do you have any advice for our characters? Share them below!

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