Grief and Keeping Focused
Tuesday, January 02, 2018
To say that 2017 went out with a bang may not be entirely inaccurate, but I think that saying 2017 went out with a shot to my heart would be a little more on the nose. I’ve been through a lot in my life; I grew up with a sister who had eating disorders and was suicidal for 6 years of my life. She was also 6 years older than me so at a young age I had to grow very mature. I lost my uncle after a 9 month battle for his life following a car accident in 2012. I also lost my best friend in the world to a drunk driver that year. 2012 also took my great aunt whom I was very close to and my 20 year old dog, Dusty.
Each time I’ve been faced with grief and loss I’ve turned to the gym. I’ve turned to schedules and routines and exercising to release the extra tension and emotion that is always so ample during times of sadness. This is no different.
I won’t go into detail, but I will say that on December 30th we had three dogs, but as of December 31st we only have one. My pets are my babies so this has been horrendous to deal with. Especially having what feels like such an empty house. But my one remaining chihuahua has been constantly by my side looking on to me with worried eyes. I know that in part he is sad for his loss, but like any other wonderful little dog, he also knows I’m in pain and is worried for me. Dogs are so perfect.
Anyways, I am writing this because I know we all go through this. I know we all have grief that has to power to derail our lives, but I want to put it out there that grief can make us feel powerless and that is when it can be so important to have a routine that can make us feel like we have some sort of control over our lives. I have been sticking to my regular schedule, eating right and logging all of my food, hitting my elliptical, doing the laundry, watching the shows I usually watch at the usual time, etc. not because I’m ignoring my pain or forgetting about my loss of my wonderful companions, but because this is how I know to get through my grief. I still allow myself to mourn and to cry when I need to. But I’m not letting it destroy me even though that might sound easier sometimes.
The way I do things isn’t for everyone. If you’re feeling immense and crippling pain it may be helpful to see a therapist, which I even did when my grandfather passed away. She was helpful and when I felt uncomfortable taking the medication she prescribed she suggested hitting the gym and it made all the difference. The point being that she helped me find what worked for me. If you’re experiencing grief or pain know that you aren’t alone and there are so many people who may not understand 100% what you’re going through because no two situations are the same, but there are so many who can empathize. Whether you’ve lost your pet, your friend, or your parent, my heart goes out to you and I want you to know that you are worthy of pushing forward and you can do it. Go at your own pace, do what is right for you and I will be rooting for you!