Sheesh, what a year for deaths! Paula Gunn Allen died six days after my mother did. Thanks to Jason's Wild Hunt blog that I know about this, since I haven't exactly been tuned in to the world for the last few weeks. Paula was close friends with my late dear friend Mary TallMountain. Although I never met Paula, I heard a lot about her from Mary. I note from some of the writings about Paula that she had similar inner conflicts from having been brought up Roman Catholic. Hearing that Paula passed has reawakened my sense of loss from Mary's death.
I find grief to be a cumulative thing. Fresh grief, or fresh cause for grief, dips into that deep well of grief we all carry and brings it to the surface, sort of like priming a pump. Grief takes as long as it takes.