As I sit in my lounge, waiting for my daughter to finish her homework, I look at our clock above the fireplace. I focus on the pendulum swinging back and forth. Always moving never staying in one place.
This made me reflect on my journey on the path of grief. How the emotional and physical self is always changing. In one of my meetings with the pastor he alerted me to the stages of grief and that they are entwined.
The five stages of grief when looking at a chart can look very linear. Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression and Acceptance. Looking at these stages it could be very tempting to wish almost that they were just that. I personally think it would be more apt to refer to them as the five states of grieving.
As previously mentioned I started attending a grief sharing group. I was looking for anything that could help me through this fog of confusion. My motivation was simple, I knew that I needed to take care of myself in order to be able to best take care of my daughters. Each week we meet as a group and it is encouraging to listen to the journey of others. Although each one is different there are many similarities which make me feel not so alone on this journey. Strange I know but true.
Of all the states of grief I have spent the most of my time living daily with depression. Some days better than others, some days feeling totally overwhelmed. Struggling to focus on task at hand has been extremely hard. The toughest times I have found are just after I drop my girls at school. I used to go home and chat to Yolanda. It was our time. Now I had to deal with the loneliness. The emptiness. The deep dark black hole of nothingness.
So to try and deal with this I signed up with the local gym in order to go and train and not have to face the darkness. Initially this worked well but overtime the depression made its way into this space as well. It was from this experience that I realized the importance of facing my grief. Looking to block out the pain with activities and busyness just wasn’t going to help. I also found myself always playing music louder. I thought if only I block out the silence then I will be better equipped to face the day. How wrong was I. Running away from the silence only meant having a disturbed sleep pattern, as I would wake at all hours of the night in order to dwell in the space of silence.
I saw that these tactics were only delaying the grieving process. Maybe I just wasn’t ready and it was necessary for the subconscious to utilize these tactics of delaying for my own good. However now was the time to face grief. To look it in the face and to say here am I. Do what you need to do. I had to allow myself to take on this journey.
As the pendulum continues to swing back and forth, I move back and forth through the various states of grief. I am no longer terrified to look grief in the face as I have become aware that this journey, although not pleasant, is a necessary part of the process. I can allow myself to sit in silence and be all alone with my thoughts, feelings and emotions. This is now a safe place.