First Mother's Day Without Mama... Freedom From Stuck-ness
How may we begin to recover the vibrant Spirit within when we are shrouded with grief and heavy darkness? This can look like so many things, and is unique to each and every one of our individual experience. Today, I’d like to offer a tried-and-true piece of my grief process that’s provided immense healing and joy to spearhead through the sad moments and break through to see the light, as well as provide some discerning questions that have been very helpful when I’m experiencing release and grief. Life can feel so paralyzing in a moment of immense pain, so much so that we feel we may never come out, may never even feel like we’ll want to come out because the truth is so hard to accept. This has been my experience with losing my Mama.
This past week I SURVIVED my first Mother’s Day without my Mama and I want to share that process for anyone it may provide help or healing to.
For weeks, I’d been counting down the days to Mother’s Day, wishing the day would never come or that I could sleep right through it. Mother’s Day has always meant so much to me, it was also my due date (THANK YOU, Mama, for letting me bake in your womb-y oven for a whole extra week and not pressuring me to come out before I wanted to!), I’ve always looked forward to it and loved showering my Mama with love and well intended, not-so-tasty breakfast in bed’s growing up. This, as I understand, is the common feeling of dread that many experience in the ‘firsts’ that come after losing a Loved One (the pain of first: OUR birth day, LO’s birth day, anniversary with LO, death day, each holiday without LO, etc.), which make the first year without them especially hard.
Grief can look like a lot of things to a lot of people. I recently found this Grief Process Chart and resonate completely, so I’m sharing it. From day to day, I shift. Like water, where I’m at changes and I flow with it the best I can.
During a conversation with my husband, Curtis, recently, when I wasn’t able to stop crying for over 2 hours, he asked a really great question, ‘At what point are you experiencing diminishing returns?’, meaning, at what point is this not serving you? Crying can be an amazing outlet for release and healing (and I am a huge proponent of doing it, often, if it feels good), but, in my experience, there is a threshold that’s passed where I know I shifting into a space of wallowing in the grief and really letting it consume me. It doesn’t feel healing and feels more like I’m pressing into it because some piece of mySelf wishes to experience deeper and deeper pain, which isn’t doing anything but hurting me more than is necessary in that specific moment.
Self-Reflective Questions for Discernment thru Grief
Does this feel good, right now, in this moment?
Am I benefitting from this release session? Do I need to allow mySelf more time to grieve during this phase of my life?
What about this process feels good and helps me?
How To Move From The ‘I Feel Stuck’ Place
Sometimes, when I notice I’m having a hard time functioning (unable to work, mentally fixated on the past and future without my Mama, experiencing anxiety surrounding Her loss, stuck in painful grief, etc), I take action that completely gets me out of my ‘comfort zone’ (comfort, in this case, usually has to do with staying in the safety of the grief).
Here are some helpful actionable decisions I’ve found:
GET OUT! This is what helped me out of MY rut this Mother’s Day. We got together with my husband’s family and went on a hike out at Red Rock. Truly, sometimes getting outside to shake up my physical surroundings which can be painful (the many memories we have in my house together, etc), is my ‘get-out-of-jail-free’ card. Seems simple, this is usually all it takes for a mental reset.
TALK IT OUT! Trust me, I get it, I know that no matter how much we talk about our grief and pain, the one way we want to see change (our LO coming back) isn’t going to happen. As mundane as ‘talking about it’ may sound, sometimes it’s exactly what I need to feel truly Seen. Often, when I speak the thought patterns swirling in my head that are inducing the pain/anxiety/fear, I realize that they are often irrational and coming from my Inner Child who is really just incredible uncomfortable with accepting the painful truth. Speaking these processes aloud gives them a voice and means it doesn’t have to stay suppressed inside any longer.
TRANSMUTE IT! Turning pain into something beautiful can be therapeutic and benefit others experiencing a similar hurt. ‘Creativity’ has become somewhat stigmatized in our society, where many believe they simply ‘don’t have’ the ability to create or that their creations ‘aren’t good’. This is a self esteem, self worthiness and sacral/solar plexus block that, given loving eyes, patience and liberation from, can absolutely be freed up and experienced. Writing songs (even songs that are one word, one note, a song is what you make it), creating art (my drawings and paintings are often very childlike and ‘cartoony’ — just like my Spirit), dancing, movement, anything that helps you MOVE THROUGH the pain will work well here.
Remember, the more freedom you have in the experience, the greater the benefit you’ll receive. I wish you many blessings during this hard time.
I love you, I See you, I FEEL you.
Below, I’m sharing some photos of what Mother’s Day 2019 looked like for me. My father, Sister and her kids were out of town, so I really had to take control of this day for mySelf.
I’m so grateful I did.