I’m not going to lie to ya’ll and tell you I’m okay, well, because I’m not and it’s good for me to share the truth.
Let me start my grief journey from the beginning… two years ago my son, a NAVY Officer, was lost at sea—a sincere tragedy. I can’t believe that last week was the two-year anniversary. I miss him daily and his loss changed me forever.
My grief journey continues when this April and May, I lost my grandfather then my grandmother to COVID-19.
My very foundation was shaken…I thought I was broken.
As if the universe hadn’t taken enough from me, last week, my sweet-spirited mother-in-law passed to be followed a few days later by my “full-of-life” niece who left two beautiful young women without a mom.
These recent deaths have had a compounding effect and I’ve been suffering. The numbness of death made it hard to express what I’ve been feeling but this morning when I woke up to find Chadwick Boseman had passed, I was heartbroken. My husband shared with me his dialogue from Civil War and things fell into place.
“Death is not the end..”
I let those words sit with me for the moment…
And thought about what I’ve learned from two years of Grief Recovery Method:
Acknowledge my losses. Each loss accumulates and builds but I healed when I acknowledged, accepted, and released the sum total of all of my losses. It has also been important for me to respect and acknowledge my disbelief of the deaths and accept that things have changed forever.
Be present and allow whatever feelings to come-up and out. I’ve learned there are no negative or positive emotions in grief. Grief can be conflicting emotions at once. I accept, at any given moment, my anger/joy, frustration/grace, sadness/happiness, and despair/love. These emotions are all truth and I become present, show up and allow them to be exactly what they are with no judgement.
Take it easy. When in grief, everything takes longer to complete. Tasks are harder and more complicated than they usually are… Grief Brain is not regular brain. Make no mistake grief brain is real and I’ve learned that my processes are different. I must take it easy, slow down and be cautious. I find ways to be at peace.
Heal my pain. Grief recovery therapy changed my life and allowed me to find relief from the burdens of my losses. Preparing my loss timeline, recovery statements and writing closure letters has allowed me to deal with my unresolved issues and face my losses. I'm forever grateful to Anne Keeton.
Understanding that the relationship with my loved ones has changed. I know my loved ones have never left me, are always with me—our relationship is simply different. I take time each day to remember them, their legacies, and what they contributed to this world. I celebrate them and their lives by pushing myself to live even when the pain of the loss is debilitating.
Chadwick Boseman as the Black Panther, inspired me to write my superhero series. He was a fantastic man with a rich and proud legacy. The emotional truth he shared in Civil War “Death is not the end…” helps me to cope and gives me hope.
RIP Chadwick! Wakanda Forever!