On Grief

Grief was a long and difficult journey for me. I wish I could say it just ended one day, but it didn’t. It was ongoing and changing. Journal writing was the most important part of my emotional recovery, because the writing allowed me to vent my anger and frustration and work through my feelings. I also believe that being injured helped me grieve because it threw me head first into the process. Looking back, I realize that my lack of mobility forced me to deal with my pain. I didn’t go to work and pretend everything was okay. I sat in a wheelchair and cried. And crying was the appropriate response to Mark’s death. Crying, combined with my writing, was my path out of the darkness.

After Mark died I knew I would live the rest of my life bitter and alone. But as I moved through grief my life changed. I began to hope for a future. And though I wrote in my journals I would never date again, over time I began to date an old friend from college, Jason. At first, I kept our relationship hidden. I was ashamed, a widow, or in my case an unofficial widow, shouldn’t be dating. But little by little I let go of the guilt and allowed our relationship to grow. Learning to go on with life and search for happiness took a very long time. And often when I thought I was “there,” when I thought I’d made it through the grief, I’d fall into the depth of despair. But one step at a time, I climbed from the depths and kept moving forward.

One day at a time…