Grief: Less. Absence: More.

By John Polo

I believe, that grief changes.

I believe, that grief lessens.

I believe, that grief itself does indeed get easier.

As the full out meltdowns seem to become a thing of the past, and the gut wrenching tears become less frequent, there is, however, one thing that becomes more profound.

Their absence.

For the last few months I have been feeling a certain way.

I believe it began shortly after the one year anniversary of her passing.

Michelle’s birthday was in November. Christmas, of course, in December. January the month that she was called Home.

Not only did I gorge myself for those three months, to the tune of an additional eight pounds, but I grieved. 


Her birthday, the Holiday’s, and the day that she passed away.

It was so much more than that though.

Those three months were so difficult, as every day I relived the horrific memories that they brought with them.

The last three months of her epic cancer battle.

But, I got through it. 

The first year passed, and my intense grief began to fade a bit.

But, something else reared its ugly head.

Something, that I was not anticipating.

Something, that I did not think was even humanly possible.

I started to miss Michelle, more.

I started to feel the absence of Michelle, more.

Fifteen months in to this journey I have learned so much.

So much.

About myself. 

About life.

About love.

About grief.

And now, I have learned this: 

Hardcore grief lessens, a bit.

Hardcore grief eases, a bit.


While the moments where you catch yourself on the floor, with tears coming down so hard, that you fear you may wake a neighbor or break a rib, become less and less frequent, absence grows.

The hours and days tick away, and we grow to feel further and further away from them.

Somehow.  Someway.  We miss them more.

Somehow.  Someway.  We feel their absence more.

We ache for their hand. To hold it just one more time.

We ache for their lips. For just one more kiss.

We ache for their smile. To see it even for a second, would bring us the ultimate bliss.

We ache for them.

For their presence.

For their very being.

For just one more second.  Of just one more day.

We miss them. 

Now more than ever.

We miss them in everything that we do.

We feel their absence in every breath that we take.

Yes, grief changes.

Yes, grief lessens.

Yes, it does get easier in time.

The missing though.  It gets worse.

The absence though.  It intensifies.

That is why ‘We aren‘t over it yet’.

That is why we NEVER get over it.

The longer that we go without them, the more that we miss them.

© Copyright 2017 John Polo


John Polo is a widower and step dad to the world's coolest girl. He also is a small business owner, author, blogger and speaker. His beautiful wife passed away at the age of 30 on January 22nd, 2016. They fell in love in high school and separated for eight years before they found their way back to each other. Shortly after, she was diagnosed with an extremely rare and aggressive cancer. Somehow, through the loss and horrific tragedy that was, John found a better him. His goal is to help others through their grief.
His website is as follows:

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9 Comments on Grief: Less. Absence: More.

  1. Maria
    August 8, 2017 at 8:00 pm (2 weeks ago)

    I am 2 weeks past a year that I lost half ny heart. I have bad days but it does gets worse into the 2nd year..I miss him tons!!

  2. Joanne
    August 8, 2017 at 5:53 pm (2 weeks ago)

    Thank you

  3. Carey
    May 3, 2017 at 6:51 am (4 months ago)

    Spot on and well said.

  4. John Polo
    April 30, 2017 at 1:24 pm (4 months ago)

    Thank you for the feedback everyone. You are not alone on this journey.

  5. Milissa
    April 28, 2017 at 11:20 am (4 months ago)

    The second year is the hardest. The third year is easier and it’s the best I’ve felt since September 5, 2014, when the love of my life passed away from cancer. 💔😢

  6. Marge
    April 28, 2017 at 6:50 am (4 months ago)

    The longing and loneliness is ever present, I can keep busy and active but when I come home the quiet and his abscence remind me that this is for always and forever.

  7. Debbie
    April 28, 2017 at 5:36 am (4 months ago)

    17 months for me. I sometimes get through a day or two without a total sobbing meltdown. I never get through a day without saying “i miss you, Jerry” out loud multiple times.

  8. Susan
    April 28, 2017 at 4:16 am (4 months ago)

    You pegged it right on the head for me. My David went Home 3/29/15. The first year was horrible like everyone says it will be. No one tells you, tho, how to deal with Year 2 going into 3.

  9. Karen
    April 27, 2017 at 8:30 pm (4 months ago)

    You put it just the way it is…


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