Moving Gently Through Grief
Balance. Emotions vs the tasks to get us to the goals, or put in a better way (as expressed by Sabine) – when possible, employing emotions as drivers to action, rather than challenges. All of this has been swirling in my mind this week, as it has for us all.
The week was an odd one, an emotional roller-coaster of pleasure and pain. After a relaxing long weekend, late on Monday night, I received news of a (unexpected and abrupt) friend’s passing. Emotions. Tears. Sleeplessness. All the thoughts in a journal. The next day I woke up and it was my birthday. My co-workers threw me a birthday breakfast, complete with mimosas. Emotions. Smiles. Celebration. A complete see-saw in 12 hours or less. In many circumstances I am able to compartmentalize. I am grateful for this, especially in times like these. I am distracted by work, by the busy week and the long to-do – it keeps the time passing quickly and no room for thoughts to crowd in. I leave my tears for home, in the evening, maybe in bed. I play my most recent memory of my friend in my mind, trying to memorize it. I know we have all had loss and of course there will be more loss to come (a thought I can hardly bear, but its reality is immovable).
I don’t think that throwing ourselves into work is always the answer, but for me sometimes it’s really just good to be busier with other things. I know this is not something that will happen in all such circumstances. I have (non-work) events and experiences to look forward to, that require planning, that require me to keep moving through a list. It helps. I keep myself together and then later, in the space and time I put aside, I grieve. Journal. Stay busy. Don’t panic. Keep it moving.
I am so sorry about your friend. I think this is fabulous the balance you have here dealing with grief. While we need to take the time to get through hard times life does not stop for us while doing so so if we don’t go to work or continue doing all the things we need to survive we won’t make it. It’s almost a coping mechanism for me. Time does heal and keeping busy can keep us moving forward in desperate times. This does not mean that we can’t spend an evening crying our eyes out and eating ice cream it just means that we can’t do it forever as we have lives to live too. Death is so hard and something we just can’t perfectly prepare for. Be kind to yourself as you go through the process and remember your friend will be cheering you on excited about your forward movement.