When Grief gets Complicated
My mom died seven months ago, my life will never be the same.
Death has a way of interrupting life that we can never prepare for. My mom died seven months ago, and each day has been a new day of surviving the crushing loss of my mother and best friend.
When she first died, I found myself on hub pages journaling my feelings and learning how important this process would be. The support of having others who have walked this journey of grief has been vital to my mental health.
Ironically, healing from the loss of death, or grieving, is not like healing from a physical condition. With a physical condition or illness, healing involves rest and time. There is always, or usually always a certainty that the future will bring better health and well-being. With grief, I expected it would be the same type of recovery. Time, rest and taking better care of myself, that should surely deliver recovery in "good time".
I can not honestly say that has been true. I think back to the time of my mom's death, and I could not imagine a day that would be any worse. Facing the reality that one moment she was doing wonderful and the next she was on a ventilator fighting for her life and losing the battle. Although that day and the day leading up to my mom's death were horrific, the journey of grief has moments that I found myself wondering how to breathe, how to move forward, how to live without her presence.
What I am finding as time continues though is that every day is unique on this journey. There have been days that were ok, that time seemed to be moving and my heart seemed at peace. There have also been days that my heart is so heavy and broken, that I wonder how I will continue on this journey without my mom.
Having others that need us are certainly important to this journey of grief. My children, whom I adore and thank God for, my husband is a wonderful man of God, my elderly father who is so very fragile. Yes, each one of these people "need" me. This very idea helps me focus on the blessing of today and the future. In my heart however, is the sadness and pain that I will carry every day that I live on this earth without my sweet mother.
I have sisters I grieve with, and the most wonderful friends who have supported me. I thank God for each person He has carefully picked to walk alongside me in this journey of life and grief. From these relationships has come great wisdom for moving forward. So many things has been shared and used to encourage. Such as, "When you love someone as deeply as you loved your mother, you can expect to grieve deeply."
I had a very special bond with my mom. She birthed me, she nurtured me, she cared for me with a long childhood illness. When I was an adult, she became one of my very best friends. I enjoyed spending time with her as much as anyone else in my life. We were so much alike, it was easy to be with her. To laugh with her, to solve life's problems. To attempt to fix what was wrong int he world... and to pray for everything and everyone. My mom was the very best person I have ever known.
How do I really get through it? My hope. My hope is in God and His promises. That He wil never leave or forsake us. That if we believe in his son, that he entered this world to carry our sins and die on the cross, that we can have eternal life. John 3:16 -- For God so love the world that He gave His only son, whoever believes in Him will not die but have eternal life.
This is what my mom believed. This is how she was able to get through the death of her own mother 40 years earlier. I have wondered how she was able to grieve her loss and wished I would have asked her. Now I know, God has the answer. BELIEVE!
I also know that people do not like to discuss death or pain. This is why my mom and I did not discuss how she grieved her own mother. It didn't feel right to discuss pain and loss. It avoids the inevitable, and that is dealing with our own loss.
I recently said to my doctor, "how do I know if this is grief or depression? I have been fatigued, sad, and not the same since my mom died". His reply was that I had a very close relationship with my mom, and that letting go takes time. He told me to be good to myself and to take time each day for me. I received what he said, and am working harder to take time for myself almost every day.
For those who may be entering into their own personal grief journey, I wish you peace, and comfort. The bible talks about peace that surpasses all understanding. This is the peace I wish for you. Be kind to yourself, take time to feel the loss. Feeling loss is honoring the love you shared. The most important advice I can give is have hope. Hope in the God who created us.... and for those who aren't sure of God... ask Him to show up in your life like only He can... and show you that He is real. For God so loved the world He sent His only son, whoever believes in Him shall not die but have eternal life. John 3:16
Mom, I miss you so much it hurts -- but I will see you soon!
God bless each one of you!