🎵🎶Swing high, swing low, sweet chariot🎶🎵! Oh what a memorable 2023 December! Most of my immediate family travelled home for Christmas and filled my home with life, love and laughter for 2 weeks! I have a new memory to add to the millions I have at my disposal to reflect on whenever I need a reminder of how good God is and has always been to me. I "swang high". This same month, I spent the 2 weeks before Christmas in the hospital with my young granddaughter while she battled RSV pneumonia! I "swang low". Whether it was the 2 weeks with the famiIy or the 2 weeks in the hospital, my mind was fixed on Mike and the many memories we made together all those Christmas times before.
There may be many more times like this in the future where happy times or challenging times will be overshadowed by the memory of those times with Mike. People say to me that time will heal the ache in the heart and the sad feelings over the loss, but it's not really time that changes that. It's the work I put into pushing through the grief, keeping myself connected to my family and true friends, writing this blog, writing my children's books, and worshiping God and helping others.
I'd like to share a passage from an blog post written by Louise Pachella on the topic of Grief. She is a licensed funeral director and embalmer in Los Angeles, California. "Grief is different for everyone. Have you heard of the standard stages of grief? Forget them. Grief is highly individual and doesn't follow a prescribed timeline. There's no specific order. You may take one step forward, then two steps back. It's also normal to have multiple conflicting emotions simultaneously, like sorrow and joy or relief and guilt. Your experience will vary because of your relationship to the deceased, the nature of the death, your support network, and your cultural or religious background. If your grief journey doesn't match everyone else's, don't worry. You're not doing grief "wrong."
Keeping myself connected to my life and allowing myself to grieve whenever the feeling hits me is helping me move forward and accept my new normal and the changes that come with it as I create a new lifestyle without Mike. I strongly recommend to anyone reading this blog who is hurting from the loss of a loved one to try your best to stay connected and actively participate in your life as best you can!
If you have any ways you have found to cope with your grief and put one foot forward, please feel free to share it in this non judgmental community space for healing. Thank you!!