There are universals in life. Among those is grief and grieving a loss. For me, the grieving process has included the loss of friendships, the death of my father and the loss of a long-term relationship within a relatively short amount of time. The grieving process for loss is often talked about as coming in stages, but those stages are not a checklist we work through on a time frame set forth by our calendar, our friends or even our strong desire to “let’s get this grief over with so I can move on.”
If we do not take the time to process grief we prevent ourselves from returning to our authentic self and finding that peace and enthusiasm for our own life. And, here’s a tip…just because you don’t deal with something doesn’t mean it won’t make its way to the surface one way or another. Ever met an alcoholic? Jeesh…those people need to process!
I’ve always been an early adopter and I kept expecting I would get through my grief faster than others and be back on track with my life and find my inner peace and my happiness as easily as I had in the past and without a whole lot of effort. I was wrong, it’s been a long journey that I have had to work at to reach a place of acceptance and now a place where I can find myself happy and thriving again. I’m grateful to have done the hard work to come through this emotional journey and sit in a place where I am relaxed, at peace with my reality and having a genuine smile on my face. I am grateful for my many blessings and for the first time in a very long time I can honestly say I am relaxed.
The relief that has found its way into my life has caused me to experience an additional emotional moment as I realize I am letting go of hurt, sadness and loss and opening myself up to happiness and optimism again. I am remembering that a person I had missed is now back and I am becoming more of the person I was before I suffered my losses. While the grief is still with me, I am also feeling stronger and more powerful with each day.
My journey through grief is not over just because I am accepting my reality and embracing optimism and enthusiasm. I will mourn the loss of my father for a very long time. I will miss him and treasure memories and lessons he taught me for the rest of my life. I will make new friends and reconnect with genuine friends from my life instead of mourning the loss of friends that have fallen out of my life, accepting that genuine and authentic relationships are valuable rather than people that are not what we hope them to be. And, I will fondly remember the wonderful times I had my with my ex and value myself for being so capable of love and affection
and partnership with someone. I am proud of the lessons I learned and know that my days of compromising on my core beliefs for the sake of someone else are over.
I came to Charleston this summer hoping to have the time to work on myself and reconnect with the truth of me and so far I am full of a renewed spirit that has me at peace. I am relaxed and content and breathing easier with each passing day.
Here I am with my cousin Claudia. We got a chance to catch up after many, many years apart. I love the smile on our faces here.