I have noticed an interesting trend/pattern within myself ever since my grandma died. I am more sensitive to death. When I hear about a death – even some fictionalized ones, I have a different kind of reaction than I used to have. Before Grandma died I reacted to death with an intellectual type of sadness. Some thing like “Oh, that’s too bad for the family.” Now I have a personal understanding of the emptiness that death leaves in its wake and my reaction is more of an emotional “I know something of what that feels like.”
I understand that each death we face strikes us differently. I am sure that losing my wife or losing one of my children would be a much different experience than losing my grandma, but I have now experienced that vacuum that death universally leaves and I can see that it has changed me. I gives me more ability to understand the loss of others. Leave it to God to make something positive out of something that we all see as not positive.