Dealing With Grief

Hi everyone. Happy Friday. This week was crazy. I had the stomach flu, and was out of work Monday-Wednesday. I’m finally feeling like myself again.

I’ve been wanting to write a blog post like this for quite a while, but honestly, it isn’t something I love to talk about. It’s difficult to open up about something that hurts, but it’s also therapeutic.

I mentioned it once, briefly in an earlier post, but I didn’t elaborate. Wednesday, 8/16 was the nine year anniversary of my mother’s passing. I was already not feeling well, and the realization of the anniversary made things worse.

A little background. My mom was diagnosed with cancer and in the same year, passed away from it. The doctors thought she had a year to live, when in reality, it was months.

My Mom was one of those people that just lit up every room she walked into. She worked in my high school cafeteria, and became a mother to people I didn’t even get a long with in school. It was just who she was. I knew many kids who called her Mom, and I know she helped a lot of people through a lot of painful times in their lives.

She spent her last week in the hospital. The nurses said they had never seen so many people come to visit. It was crazy how many people came back, day after day, just to spend another second with her. Like I said, she changed people’s lives.

When Mom finally passed, I have to say, there was some relief. Taking care of a woman, who for your entire life, was so strong and independent, was the saddest thing to experience. I say it was a relief, but that feeling of relief wasn’t there for long.

I didn’t spiral into depression, but there were dark moments. There were also happy moments. I have the best father a girl could ask for, and what we went through brought us closer than we probably ever would have been. It also brought me a step mother, step sister and a niece, who I wouldn’t know if things were different.

It was hard to feel that happiness for a long time though. There were times I felt lost, angry and confused. Why my Mom, of all people? I may never know that answer. And I’ve come to terms with that, but it took a lot to get where I am. Sure, I still cry. I cried Wednesday. But I don’t let that darkness cover all the light in my life.

If you are going through or struggling with any grief, I have a few pieces of advice.

Keep up your routine, to keep yourself healthy. Sleep, eat and drink water. Don’t let yourself get so low, you hurt your health.

Talk to someone. Family, friend, counselor…whoever it is, make sure you trust them. Don’t shut yourself off from the world. Darkness is a lonely place, don’t let it consume you.

Express yourself. Whether it’s through writing, painting, cooking…find something you can pour your heart into. Every time you feel that cloud rolling in, go to that one thing that makes you feel powerful and alive.

All of this is easier said than done. It’s been nine years and I still struggle. Every time I see someone post a selfie with their mother or complain about their mother, that pang of jealousy and darkness comes rolling in; but, I never let it win.

A much more personal post, but I’ve been wanting to write it for quite a while. I hope you have a fabulous weekend!

You can keep up to date with me on Twitter & Instagram: @JessicaInspired and on Facebook: @authorjessicarachow

You can still read chapter one of Alter Reach here.

Until next time –

Jessica

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