I know the title of this post seems a little backwards, but just bear with me. Many times when we experience death, no matter who or what they are to us, we get caught up in the finality of it all. We only see what we have lost. It is easy to focus on the missing presence, the memories that we wanted to make, or perhaps just avoiding the situation entirely. It is our human nature… or perhaps more what society defines grief as that can stifle our growth. When we become engulfed in loss and sadness it is so easy to miss the little bits of beauty. Although our world seems to have been complete destroyed, trust me, there is much to behold. Yes, we lose pieces of us each time, but when those are gone new growth begins. There are so many things in nature that prove to be a beautiful example. Let’s take fire. It is has the power to completely devastate all in it path, but from the ashes comes new life.
When Adam passed away, my world was completely obliterated. I had lost my soul mate! The one person who always made sure to build me up, love me for me, and brought me so much comfort and safety. Just functioning was insanely difficult. For me, I have someone who keeps me moving forward, whether I want to or not. With that being sad, I can say that I really haven’t grieved the loss. I always said I didn’t have time. How do you move forward with only half of yourself? A massive crater now existed in my day to day life. Most of my time was spent thinking about what we had, regrets about what I did and didn’t do, and so many other things dealing with his death, that I completed forgot to look at all I had sitting in front of me. He has left the best parts of him, with me, in our son. The pain still exists and the presence is still missed, but yet… there is newness that is beginning to manifest.
There truly is life after death. This idea was a long time coming to me. When I stopped focused on everything I lost, I started the think about the possible gains. Just like trees shedding their leaves in the winter, I realized that I could not hold on to what was no longer mine. I needed to shed the guilt and regret. Y’all I am not going to lie… it took quite a while to finally begin to “be gentle” with myself. If you have not experienced a sudden loss of someone close to you…man let me tell you it’s a doozie! Once I started doing that I could feel the beginning of new growth. I had to let go of who I was while I was married. I begin to evolve to adapt to my situation. The crazy thing is it seemed so natural. I began to embrace all time that I had with Adam and now take the time to grow from the experiences. To put it bluntly I am learning from my mistakes…or at least I hope.
Perhaps I should explain in more detail what I mean when I said “letting go of who I was while I was married”. For me, Adam was truly the yin to my yang! He was the guy who could fly by the seat of his pants and make it look like he had done some extensive planning. I was the one who was like okay lets make a check list and make sure that we have all our i’s dotted and our t’s crossed. It was difficult for me to be spontaneous… like that was unheard of!!! Adam did an amazing job of constantly reminding me to “mellow out” and let go of the control. He help teach me how to balance the planning and fun! I could be out of my comfort zone in a safe environment… well obviously given the circumstance… that is not the case anymore. I have become the control freak yet again…I need a hero and fast!!!! Who should be there to save the day you ask? Surprisingly, it was Henry! He needed me to be the best version of me. To do that I had to accept my flaws and make them positives. Strangely, I feel like that came pretty naturally. My control freak”ness” was a little bit of a blessing in disguise. If any of you have a toddler around, structure is a NECESSITY! What I though was a flaw, truly was a blessing when I became a single parent. Ground rules were laid fast!!!! HA, believe me it was rocky in the beginning, but it all worked out in the end. My sense of self confidence was pretty much zero, but the best way to teach something is to live it. In order to help my son feel confident in all that he does…I have to be the example. Yeah, yeah… I know he is only almost three, but it is never to young to teach your child of their self worth! I could go on and on about all the new aspects of my personality that have begun to shine through, but frankly… NO ONE HAS TIME FOR THAT!
Just remember no matter the circumstances, don’t be afraid to let go of what is passed and embrace the new growth!