It’s been a week since I poured out how I was feeling in my last blog post. Today is June 7, 2018 and today marks 60 days since you’ve been gone. Someone reading this blog post may wonder why I’m writing to you. I’m writing because I realized that journaling how I’m feeling is helping me process my grief. I’ve been going to counseling every other week; but something shifted in me when I put aside time to actually sit and write out my thoughts and feelings. Although the pain is still there and I miss you like crazy….my heart doesn’t feel as overwhelmed as it did 7 days ago.
Momma, I had convinced myself that reaching a certain number of days would help the pain dissipate or lessen. However, I have learned in the past week that it’s not the number of days elapsed that will make me feel better, it’s what I do in the space and time given that will facilitate my healing. I have learned that each day I have a choice. I have the option of wallowing in my sorrow and not processing my feelings. Or I can choose to do something different. Instead of stuffing my feelings down, I have the option of opening myself up to the healing process and allowing grief to do what only it can do. In essence, I’ve learned over the last 7 days that there are times in our lives when healing is an intentional choice.
I’m not talking about the kind of healing that occurs when you cut your finger or bruise a part of your body. The body is designed to initiate that type of healing on it’s own. I’m talking about emotional, mental, and spiritual healing. Whether it’s the loss of a loved one, loss of a relationship, house, job, or dream….this type of work often requires us to make an intentional choice to embark on the journey of healing. For example, while visiting our family home a few days ago, I walked into your bedroom to get a t-shirt out of the drawer. As I have done in the past many times, I didn’t want to wear the pajamas that I had packed and chose instead to wear one of your t-shirts to bed. Well, I forgot that they had packed up your clothes. I opened the drawer and it was empty. I opened up several other drawers and they were empty too. I walked over to your closet and pulled back the curtain. All your clothes were gone! In that moment, I felt like my chest was going to explode. However, in that moment, I realized that I had a choice to make.
I could either act like seeing the empty drawers in your bedroom didn’t bother me or I could honor how I was feeling and give myself room and space to process the grief. I chose to honor how I was feeling. I walked slowly back into my room and acknowledged how I was feeling. I was hurt, numb, and unprepared for that moment. It was as if reality had once again slapped me in the face. And man, did it sting! However, I simultaneously realized that honoring how I was feeling allowed me to survive the moment. You see Momma….I’m learning that grief has a place in our lives. It’s God’s way of helping us cope with and ultimately live with the loss in a healthy way. So many of us don’t allow ourselves to grieve and we get stuck in that place of pain or we stop living healthy, productive lives. We just stuff our feelings down and try to move on as if we’re okay.
Momma…at 60 days, I understand that healing is indeed a choice and I am determined each day to open myself up to the healing process and let grief do what it came to do.