Monday, February 18, 2013

Growing in a New Direction

I have to ask myself some days if this is what grief feels like. I don't know what it is supposed to feel like and it feels different for every person. Every day it might feel a little different to me. Some days, I can smile through the pain and some days the energy is just not there.

This past week I have been down with a virus type bug. Headache-migraine in intensity, stomach nausea, sinus infection-general yucky week. You know the kind of week, drag yourself to work, get through most of the day-around 2-2:30, you start to feel really bad and by 4:30 you feel so bad you could almost throw up from the headache and nausea, and you just want to close your eyes and lay in the dark. 

By Wednesday, I had called the doctor, gotten some antibiotics for the sinus infection, started on migraine medicine and did nothing but go to work and come home and fall into bed until the next day and do it again. By Sunday, I was able to go to church and PSR with the kids. I had missed two meetings during the week, but couldn't physically do it and have the energy for work the next day. 

I often wondered how my physical self affected my emotional self when I am out of sorts. What I mean is, when I feel like crap, does it make me feel more crappy or sad than I already am about Shannon? Truthfully, I think weakness does play a part in it. I am not able to be as positive about life in general when I feel pukey. So, it makes sense that I would be more vulnerable to missing Shanny or not being able to "pull myself out of it" as I usually do. 

I really don't like phrases like that-snap out of it, pull yourself together, move on, get over it..People really show their ignorance when they use language like that with people in grief. There is no time frame, limit or time line to go by. No one can dictate, presume or advise you when it is appropriate to feel a certain way. You must feel your way through the process.

You must constantly grow in a new direction. You and only you will find the right direction. Ask God to show you the path. Prayer and faith make excellent companions, The Holy Spirit will guide you and God can lead you-but the direction you take-is up to you. Just grow for it. God will give you the grace as you need it.

This journey is not easy, but it is yours to own. Prayer and Faith have often given me the courage I need to take the next step, when I would much rather curl up and stay put for a while inside my grief. I have realized
some days, I allow myself to let go, to really feel sad-because I don't live in denial, I don't want to hurt and I don't believe I deserve to be in pain.

Once I found forgiveness of myself, I could accept grief for what it truly is for me. I understand everyone defines grief differently.For me, it is a distinct deep sadness of missed moments. I grieve the time I lost with Shannon. I know for me, I miss that the most. I miss everything about her-her physical beauty, her smile and her sweetness. I miss our routine-the phone calls, emails and silliness. I miss our hugs, the laughter and the kisses. I miss our moments.

For me, it is important to share information and to try and educate people about grief. It is also, that people know they are not alone if they don't want to be. And, I want parents to remember to love their kids every day-out loud. Tell them-every day-out loud, how much you love them, and why. Tell each of them something special about them, that they will remember and cherish-as a moment.

Grow in a new direction every day, while your kids are growing, you are growing, too. Just like I am growing in a new direction every day. We all are, really. That is what life is-growing and direction. Hopefully, heavenward! Onward and upward..oh, come on-we need to lighten up a little, right?

I just believe we are all in this together, to learn, to grow, to love and be loved. And to pray, because we know the power of prayer and faith as a mother grieves.