When your life changes suddenly, there is no way to begin a new chapter without grieving. I promise you, it’s inevitable. Even if you are leaving a negative experience behind, you will grieve. It is so ingrained in our minds that we have to keep our composure—as if it’s “no big deal” to move our lives or take huge leaps of faith. We are expected to start new jobs and carry on as if we had no previous routine.
The interesting part is because we have this expectation that we shouldn’t need to grieve or take time to adapt, we often don’t even know how to recognize the process as we experience it. Then, grief can come so intertwined with another emotion that we can’t distinguish one thing from another…it may seem like extreme irritability or simple sadness. Maybe it will appear as something relatively ambiguous and confusing like it did for me. My mind began to feel more and more clouded; as if I couldn’t escape from a light rain that kept me from feeling content and fully happy. Then one day, it became so intense and out of my control that I panicked. These were my exact thoughts: “There must be something wrong. I’ve been feeling great most of the time…but how can I really be happy if I can also hit a low like this? Some part of my mind—something I’m not aware of—must be really, really broken…maybe I’m not okay? Maybe feeling great and happy has been some kind of illusion…what the hell is this?”
I recognized what I was thinking didn’t make sense, so I got on the phone.
“This isn’t what you think…maybe this pain you’re feeling is the final stage of your grief. This is your way of clearing it all. You’re about to get through this.” Within moments, my mind became light faster than I can put into words. It clicked and all made sense. I kept crying, but then it was absolutely blissful and relieving.
When we experience pain, grief, or even numbness, we are all so trained to assume something is wrong with us; the experience must be horrible and dark. But it doesn’t have to be. If you change your way of thinking, it becomes magic. If we realize that grief can come alongside happiness and joy, the tendency to panic when we hit a low dissipates. We wouldn’t feel any need to prove our “strength” or composure because we’d understand that experiencing all spectrums of emotion without fear is true strength. If there were no expectations or judgments, if we were a little kinder and gentler with ourselves…maybe we’d all find ourselves lost for a while…and then much, much clearer.
Namaste, Laura Marie, XO
Feb 27, 2013