I have four books already out, with 4 more coming!!
Picking up the phone to call someone to share exciting news with automatically comes with the thought that Jim doesn’t even know this person who has helped me get through life without him.
It feels weird. But quite honestly, everything without him feels weird. And the rest of the world doesn’t know this.
Because it’s invisible.
Because it’s usually avoided – certainly not discussed.
Because it’s uncomfortable.
It gives the world the impression that grieving ends, which is completely false. It gives the world the impression that I’m fine, when every day is still a challenge in its own way…
I’m going to Michigan for Thanksgiving… for the first time since losing Jim.
People don’t comprehend the depth of what this means.
Packing and getting to the airport. Flying. Staying at my parents house in “our” room. Seeing everyone. Going to The Lions Game. Flying back home.
By the time I get home, I’m pretty sure I’ll feel like I’ve run a few emotional marathons.
And remember- on the outside, I look fine. The world won’t see the rollercoaster of emotions happening nonstop.
So even though it’s over a month away, it’s already on my mind. I’m so excited to be with my family on Thanksgiving again. And I also know I’ll be coming home to Colorado full of emotions.
These are the things that will never change, whether it’s five years or twenty five. These invisible parts of my life.
So I’ve learned to accept it rather than to judge myself. I’ve learned to ride the wave of emotions. I’ve learned to do what’s best for me rather than what others expect. I’ve learned to plan extra time.
I’ve learned that I’m so much stronger than I ever knew, but please remember – I didn’t have a choice.
So this is why I am extremely intentional with my choices.
If you’re struggling through this holiday season missing someone, you don’t have to go through it alone. You don’t have to go through it the way you think you should or the way others expect.
It’s YOUR journey.
And you’re not alone!
Connect with others who get it – in person or online.
Remember that the world doesn’t see so much of what you go through. Consider letting someone in on your struggle. Someone you can vent to and lean on and be completely yourself with – a friend, a counselor, a teacher, even a stranger.
My meltdown in Whole Foods showed me that there are people everywhere willing to lend a hand, a smile, an encouraging word.
Simply asking “how are you doing lately?” opens the door – in a loving, compassionate way.
There are no bad questions and no bad conversations.
Hopefully this blog has provided some comfort, education or awareness. If you know someone who will benefit from reading this blog, please share it.
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By making noise and breaking stigmas we can make the world a better place.