As I attempted to write this blog post for the last week (yup, a whole week) I come to the screen and my mind goes blank. Gratitude. Well I can write all day every day about how grateful I am for my life. Grief… well I do actually speak and write about this topic all day, every day. In fact, I live both grief and gratitude in all areas of my life, just not usually together.
How can I be grateful for my losses?
As we head into the “holiday” season I feel heavier, not as energetic.. not very happy and I seem to burst into tears most days .. yet I’m ok.. I know what the “season” means and I actually am in the middle of a deep cleaning of my home – I live – I am alive but make no mistake … I grieve every day .. I miss them .. I miss Chloe and what would she be doing? I miss my mom and her planning Thanksgiving dinner ( she loved Thanksgiving). I miss my dad and his face, I could always see his love.. and his nickname for me. Yes, how I miss them- I can’t be grateful for this? Can I? Well actually stick with me through this post – here is my humble opinion.
The Grief and The Gratitude
I won’t ever be grateful for the loss but I am in fact grateful for the love. I wasn’t who I am today prior to losing my baby daughter Chloe and my parents. I took it all for granted and I don’t State this to be a martyr but in fact truthful.
I sit often and wonder how I could have ever wasted time that could’ve been spent with my parents or what could I have done differently to have a healthy delivery when I gave birth to Chloe? But in the end my thoughts always come back to understanding that I am the luckiest to have them. I am grateful for finding myself and I am grateful to be able to share my story. Am I grateful for the grief? No, but I am grateful I found ways to process the grief.
I am grateful that I choose living. I don’t exist, I don’t live in what was, I live today as best as I can. There are impossible days and even for these days I am grateful because this has taught me that I will have less impossible days and most of all I can recognize the happy days.
How do you find the gratitude in grief?
You just do. When you are facing your grief journey – realization becomes your very best friend. Realizing that you deserve to be happy and well. Realizing that you deserve to live a worthy life – that you are worth it!! This realization doesn’t take away from the loss or something that you should ever feel guilty about! Ever!! You will come to terms with your life – the how – it’s different for every single person- it is important for you to find your version of both the how and to find gratitude again.
The Graceful Exit
You will find your way. The graceful exit is to know that you cannot stay in the pain, you will gracefully exit the impossible days, you will find the gratitude and the grace. The roadmap – is this- finding your way- finding your happy. That is the graceful exit.
Yes, I do believe gratitude and grief can reside together. Not the loss, not the sadness, not all the would’ves, could’ves, or what ifs but the love that forever remains.