When we first encountered grief, it was a state of shock. It was difficult to breathe. It was difficult to accept that people everywhere were continuing to do things like work, play, eat meals, have normal days. That passed. Eventually we started working, playing, eating and having days without feeling like robots. Then I remember the first time I laughed spontaneously. I felt foreign to myself in that moment. As time has passed, we have experienced happy moments, good days, waves of sadness, the gamut.
It's the happy days I find the hardest. During the happy I get caught up in the happy. But afterwards, the guilt creeps in. I'm not supposed to be happy. After all, we lost something so big that it stopped our lives for several months. So with the guilt, I throw myself back into the grief. Self-defeatist.
I would tell myself, I should be happy, I have kids who deserve a happy mom. But they are words in my head and the guilt monster has a louder voice. So the circle of the soup of defeat spins around me. Each time though, I get a little bit better at being ok with happiness. Happiness and I are getting to know each other again, starting anew.
In the end, I feel that the secret to grief is two things: surrender and forgiveness. When I surrender to my emotions I push through. When I fight my emotions it is merely an exercise in clutching to them so tight, they can only pile up inside feeding the fire. Forgiveness, I'd like to write about again in more depth, but the main thing here is to forgive anything that guilt tries to tsk tsk. I can forgive me, and thumb my nose at guilt. If there's one thing I love, it's the freedom to be stubborn. I scorn guilt. I invite happiness to cross my threshold, I'll enjoy its visit if I can.