Thursday, September 19, 2019

Can't go over it, can't go under it...

       Today marks the three year anniversary of my brother's death.  His death, and that of my other two siblings, has shaped me and confounded me.  It is said that time heals all wounds. While this may be true for some, I feel that the wounds caused by grief  are an anomaly. 

"Grief is lonely, no matter how many other people feel it. 
They are different, each one, because we've lost different people, different versions of the same men.
  We are each carrying our own load, 
and it is ours alone to bear."
~Nora McInerny Purmort
 It's Okay to Laugh

      I once read that grief is chaos. There is no program to follow, no set of rules laid out, no timeline for recovery.  It is akin to a hamster wheel that one must run on for the rest of their life.  There is no closure.  No moving on.  Rather, it is something that seeps into us and becomes a part of our being.  Grief has its curses, but also has its blessings.

     Our greatest teachers often come in the form of difficult times;  painful experiences, devastating illnesses, tragic accidents.  Seeing these unpleasant times in our lives as teachers with valuable lessons won't make them easier to bear, but knowing that there is something to be learned from what is happening may help us move forward through it.  Each one of us has things we need to learn and we all have different teachers.  Each lesson makes us more brave, more resilient and, believe it or not, more grateful.

"I am creating my own path through my own grief, 
toward my own version of happiness."
~Nora McInerny Purmort
It's Okay to Laugh

   Though it is easier said than done, we should be thankful for all of the places in our lives that feel uncomfortable or even painful. These feelings can, and should be, used as catalysts for change in our lives.  When you come to see them as such, you can see how everything has a purpose (I will not resort to using my least favourite saying, everything happens for a reason). 

     When a loved one dies,  we must love ourselves enough to begin again.  To not live as if we are dead, but to live as if we are truly alive.  It is essential to remember that each day is an enormous gift meant for us to be able to begin anew; to start over with each sunrise.  And if it happens to be a bad day, we need to give ourselves permission rest as the sun sets, knowing that the sun will come up again tomorrow and we will be given yet another new chance.

    I am making a conscious effort to find gratitude along my path. It is not a linear journey and oftentimes, not an easy one.  It begins with a single step in the right direction.  I believe I am on my way and I do not walk alone.