It would be so helpful if there was an app to track stress like there is to track spending.
Wouldn’t it be marvelous to get an alert that said, “Low Balance”, for mental, physical and psychological reserves like the one you can get for your bank account right before you are heading to overdraft territory?
But there isn’t.
And few of us are very good at gauging just how much is left in our mental wellness accounts which means we often keep giving when the well is more than dry.
I’d be lying if I said I spend the same amount of time crying, lamenting and bent over in agonizing pain that I did in the early days of mourning Dominic. I’ve found a way to keep him close, to trust his soul to Jesus and to (largely) live in the present instead of always longing for the past.
There are days, though…
Read the rest here: How Stress Impacts Grief
After the flurry of activity surrounding the funeral, our house was so, so quiet.
Even with the five of us still here, it felt empty.
Because Dominic was gone, gone, gone and he was not coming back.
And the silence pounded into my head and heart until it became a scream:
How do I DO this?
Read the rest here: How Do I DO This? The Question Every Bereaved Parent Longs to Ask
I think it was somewhere around two months from Dominic’s departure when my heart realized life was moving forward whether I granted permission or not.
Not only folks on the fringes and the “bigger world out there” but close by-in my own family, my own circle of intimate friends-people were making plans, having birthdays, going places and doing things.
I wanted to scream.
Read the rest here: Child Loss: Finding Courage to Face the Future
No one wakes up one day and just “is”. We become, over time, as our innate nature interacts with the world around us. First our parents and siblings influence us and then school, friends, life experience either gently molds us or pounds us into shape.
Often we get so used to our own way of doing and being we never give it much thought. It’s just “how we are”. We work around our faults and try to use our strengths to our advantage.
Most of us are pretty good at it.
Then something earth shattering comes along and suddenly the cracks are exposed and we haven’t the energy to cover them over.
Read the rest here: What Can Make Grieving Harder? Things You Might Not Expect.
Sometimes the day or the week after a holiday seems extra hard.
Deflated. Exhausted. Weepy. Irritable. Discontented.
All words that can describe a heart once the dishes are washed and the celebration ended.
Some of y’all probably woke up thinking, “I did pretty good on Mother’s Day” only to be blindsided by the tears you managed to hide and the grief you managed to stuff.
That’s OK. It happens.
Read the rest here: Holiday Hangover
This will be the tenth Mother’s Day since Dominic ran ahead to Heaven.
Every year has been different because families continue to grow and change and the world turns and life marches on.
Every year presents unique challenges and particular paths that must be navigated anew. It’s always an emotional roller coaster.
Read the rest here: Holidays Can Be Hard-What To Do About Mother’s Day
While I’ve always been an introvert, I was not nearly the homebody I’ve become since my son ran ahead to heaven.
Now staying in, carefully planning social events and obligations, leaving a few days between high-energy gatherings and just generally pacing myself is the norm.
I’m truly not anti-social. I love my people. I love seeing them and talking to them.
But since there’s only so much energy to go around I AM selectively social.
Grief changes lots of things.
I am simply not able to spend energy on frivolous and marginally meaningful social activities anymore.
I’m sure that hurts some folks feelings and I am truly sorry.
But I can’t help it.
Read the rest here: Not Anti-Social. Just Selectively Social.
Grief has a traveling companion: Anxiety. And it is relentless.
Before Dominic ran ahead to heaven I had no idea that along with sorrow, missing and heartache, I would have to battle a creeping sense of dread that could turn an ordinary day into a nightmare.
I’ve learned to plan ahead and minimize triggers I can identify, but sometimes I find myself suddenly overwhelmed with no easy means of escape.
That’s when I apply this technique.
Read the rest here: Grounding Exercise for Anxiety
Just yesterday a fellow bereaved mom asked the question: What, exactly IS grief work?
We hear the term bandied around and while it means different things to different people, I use the phrase to encompass the mental, physical, psychological, emotional and relational work (and it is work!) a grieving heart must do in order to process and learn to carry sorrow and missing.
And while I won’t pretend to be an expert (except on my own experience) I do have a lot to say about what has helped, what has hurt and what I’ve learned over the nearly nine years since Dominic left us.
So the first topic I’m going to mine from old posts, from unfinished drafts and (hopefully!!) from hearing back from some of YOU is “Grief Work”.
I think it’s a good way to start a new year when our hearts are particularly tender from the holiday hoopla and all the internal discipline necessary to dwell among the uninitiated.
I have used the term for years and only recently has someone asked me to define it.
I guess I never realized that in all the writing about it, I’d never really explained what it meant.
So here goes.
Read the rest here: What, Exactly, IS “Grief Work”?
There are so many ways child loss impacts relationships!
Some of the people you think will stand beside you for the long haul either never show up or disappear right after the funeral.
Some people you never expected to hang around not only come running but choose to stay.
And every. single. relationship. gets more complicated.
When your heart is shattered, there are lots of sharp edges that end up cutting you and everyone around you. It’s pretty much inevitable that one or more relationships will need mending at some point.
Read the rest here: Emotional Overload and T.M.I.