Thursday, May 31, 2012

Whoa... Spontaneity? What's that?!

Yes... you read it right, I don't think I know what spontaneity is... Okay, okay, so I know what it is - but I definitely have forgotten what it feels like, until tonight.

In high school most things we did were pretty spontaneous, though it was never anything huge. Just a random night at the movies, hanging out in front of the school, or playing towel tag. Rarely was anything planned. When I moved to Utah for college I started out being pretty spontaneous - I would find out about an event through ASUU or FC or the HC just a couple hours before it started, I would find a few friends and go - sometimes even just going by myself. But that really didn't last long. I started getting sick when big events came around (I always seemed to have a test or something... stress) and I became less spontaneous as my freshman year went on. I put school first, how it should have been.

I then moved out of the dorms and Spence and I became a lot more serious - getting engaged and then married. Because Spencer was always sick with his CF we rarely were able to be spontaneous. If we tried, something always seemed to come in our way... Usually we couldn't because there was not enough oxygen tanks to get us by but other things came in the way too - sudden need of treatments, had to stick around for a phone call from the doctors office, had to stay home because of a refrigerated medication delivery, a sudden drop of oxygen saturations; not enough energy to shower.... the list really can go on.

There were many times where we talked about wanting to plan a trip somewhere or do something fun. We talked and dreamed about doing so many things together. We'd see many events that were in the next month or two and desperately wanted to go, but of course you had to purchase tickets in advance or RSVP in advance to many of the things we wanted to do. We couldn't just be spontaneous! We couldn't see something that looked fun and then immediately get online and book the tickets without spending about a week in thought to really see if it would work out. Not to mention many phone calls with insurance and his doctors to make sure that everything would be okay. Would he have a clinic visit that day? Would he be feeling horrible? Would I have to go by myself? What if we're too far away from the doctors and he gets really sick? Would he be in the hospital? When is the next time he will be in the hospital, and will he be out in time? He does his best 1-2 weeks after he gets out of the hospital, can we plan this around that? Will his meds need to be kept cold that month? Do we need to order oxygen tanks in advance and, oh wait, is the oxygen guy even going to be around that week? When will we have to order the extra meds to take with us? Do we need portable oxygen? How will he do his treatments on the go? Will he even do his treatments? How will we transport all his medical equipment? Am I okay with doing manual CPT at least 4 times a day while we're gone? Will this make him sick? Would there be a huge infection risk? Is it worth it?
I'm not even kidding you every single thought and more went through our minds when it came to doing just about anything. We couldn't really even plan ahead. We could do simple day trips that were close to home, but as far as traveling much over 2 hours it was out of the question without serious thought, consideration, planning, and tons of stressing. He was just so sick that we had to take EVERYTHING into account. When we didn't, disaster tended to strike.

So with that being said, we didn't plan ahead, and we couldn't do things on a whim if it was too far away from home. We learned to do things day by day and not get our hopes up about things that we heard on the radio or saw on TV. Until his health improved, we were very limited in living our lives together, really. It was very frustrating, and really we did what we could.

But tonight - for the first time in a VERY long time.... I was able to plan ahead. I was able to very spontaneously say that I will go to a concert with my best friends in Utah in September. I am able to actually preorder tickets online for this concert. I can't really even believe it. And I should be super happy and excited about this right? Well I am excited... but I'm also kind of sad at the same time, and scared.

I'm not used to this kind of freedom.... The ability to do these things without having to think about another person. Doing them for.... well for ME. That's a weird thought to me and really unfamiliar. And right now I'm wishing that I had someone else to worry about. =/


(((I will never, EVER say that Spencer held me back. By spending my time with him at our house and for 2 weeks nearly every month in the hospital was MY choice. Of course I could have done things without him, (he actually encouraged me to ALL of the time!) but I wanted to spend my time WITH him, at home or not. And I wouldn't change that choice for anything. I won't ever regret it.
But I guess I just didn't realize the freedom that I was 'missing'. And I feel horrible actually saying that. =( This is not at ALL to say that I wasn't happy, by the way. )))

I can now do all the things that I couldn't have done with Spence. go to concerts, take a weekend trip on a whim, go to conferences, spend time outdoors, hike, etc etc. And while I'm excited for these opportunities, and I know that he is very excited for me and wants me to live my life to the fullest, I'm just sad. horribly, horribly sad.. Because I want to be able to share these things with him so desperately. It's not fair that I can do them and he couldn't, and now can't.

It's this new part of my life that I am just now realizing that I have in front of me and I'm terrified to live it.

My thoughts have always been that the next step in my life would be moving back to Utah, getting a job and working my tail end off, and returning to school. I didn't think about all these other things I could do. I thought about going to a movie with friends, having someone to hang out with on weekends maybe playing games. But going out and doing things because I want to? It's something that hasn't crossed my mind until now.

I'm having a really hard time capturing exactly how I am feeling about this. This feeling is something entirely new to me and I hate it. I can't figure it out. I don't know how to sort through these thoughts and emotions.

I just can't believe the whole situation. I'm ordering tickets online tomorrow... I'm doing this because I want to and I know it will be a very fun time. Of course right now I want to back out and not do it - but it's not for a few more months and by then hopefully I will be partially adjusted to this new spontaneity that I'm now able to have....

And just an ending thought.... You know we always wanted to go to a concert together - but we couldn't. His anxiety was always high around a lot of people and loud noise. We'd have to juggle about 4 oxygen tanks to last us through the night. He wouldn't be able to stand up for long periods of time. He just wouldn't have enjoyed himself. But now I can, I'm free to do this. And I know that he would want me to - I know that he's probably proud of me for taking this step (realizing what I was doing at the time or not...) It just sucks that I have to go to it "alone". (Yes I know I have my friends, but you know what I mean.. right?)

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Heart-Felt Thank You

A friend who I haven't talked to in a very long time IMed me tonight and I perked up immediately and got excited. She was also a good friend of Spencer's and I know she misses him. It was great to catch up and what really made this a great conversation for me was that we talked about my husband. She IMed me to talk about Spencer and share some experiences that she had.

I don't have many people who openly and freely talk about Spencer to me. But the few people who do - I can't even begin to tell you how much it truly means to me. I realized tonight how thankful I am for those who text, message, or call me just to chat about my husband. And who take the time to chat with me about him when I bring him up. It means SO much. 

I just want to extend this "Thanks" as widely as I can because I want it to reach everyone that it applies to since I know I can't possibly go and thank each person individually. I posted a status update on my facebook and I just wanted to share:

"I love talking about Spencer. I love hearing stories about Spencer. I love just sharing my memories of him and hearing others memories of him. From the very bottom of my heart, THANK YOU to those who take the time (minutes to even hours) to just sit and listen and talk with me about my husband. It means the WORLD to me."

Friends, please don't feel shy in bringing up my husband... his life, death, and everything in between. It's comforting and helpful for me to talk about him. I know that sometimes people avoid the topic, almost force the conversation around Spencer and anything related. Some people don't know what to say. I just want to let everyone know that it's OKAY to talk about that - actually it's very, very much welcome. I sometimes feel bad when he's not brought up or I feel like that topic is being ignored. 

Don't be shy! I want to share the memories! He is part of my past, a very important part that I never want to, or will forget. 

Please don't be shy... and again - Thank you so much!! You all know who you are!!!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

His face....


I started writing this as a status - but it continued to get longer and longer so I thought I would write a short blog with some of my thoughts

You know... there are some moments when I see his picture and I can't stop staring. Sometimes it's a picture of our wedding day. Sometimes a pic of us in the mountains together. Sometimes it's just a photo of him smiling. Oh that smile - how I miss it so.
I study his face for minutes - sometimes glancing around the room to see if others are watching this 'obsession' that I have, wondering why I am staring at the same picture. Looking at the same face for so long.
I could study his face for hours if I had the time. The same picture over and over again. From his long, brown hair that was always tousled causing me to constantly fuss over it. Down to the wrinkles on his forehead when he smiled, laughed, frowned, or cried.  His bushy eyelashes that were always in 10 different directions at once. His bulging, "buggy" eyes (sorry Spencer!). The hazel color and the shine in his eyes. The way they seemed to sink into his skull yet stick out at the same time. My favorite feature of his face - his eyes. Across to his perfect little nose that seemed to fit his face well with blackheads strung over the surface of his nose. The oxygen tubing that was a constant reminder of the illness that he fought with every breath he took. His skin, white and rather pale shining in the sun. Down to his lips... His plump, red, usually chapped lips - but always somehow so soft and kissable. His teeth - with a tint of yellow from years of aerosolized medications. His front teeth slightly crooked. Bits of food frequently caught in them. His mouth so big, especially when he smiled. And his smile - oh his smile. A picture was so rare without a gigantic smile.

These pictures are the only true evidence I have that he existed. That WE existed together. Memories often times feel like a dream. It rarely feels real that we shared a life together at one point. That he was, and still is, my everything. It feels like a dream to think that I cared for him, loved on him, comforted him when he was sick. Spending hours laughing at youtube videos, talking about the most random things. Cried on his shoulder when I felt too weak to carry on.... It's hard to believe that at one point I was so desperate for his health and I would have given ANYTHING in the WORLD for it to be me and not him. It now seems like a dream that I spent countless hours sitting by him while he did his treatment. Spent hours awake in the middle of the night due to his coughing and vomiting. Spending hundreds of hours next to his hospital bed as he fought to breathe. To survive.

These photos I cherish forever because they are proof that it happened. That I was the happiest woman alive to be his wife. To be his everything. To be PRIVILEGED to be his caretaker for such a long time.

And while looking at these photos many times consumes me --- there are some moments when I see his picture and immediately look away. It becomes to painful to see the man I love in only a photo.... It brings back reality that he's not here anymore. It hurts to study his face because I realize how much I have forgotten... And goodness, I don't want to forget. I want to remember every single winkle upon his face. His face is a memory that fades from my mind over time - almost 6 months later I am forgetting that gigantic smile he constantly had despite all of his adversities.

Yesterday evening was a night I couldn't bare to look at his precious face - but tonight I can't look away. I want to remember. I need to remember.


Saturday, May 19, 2012

The little things

Oh let me tell you - it's the little things that make me smile these days =) I wanted to share this with you because it still makes me smile every time that I see these pics/video on my desktop. 

Shortly after I got to the hotel when I was in LA for the Starlight Children's Foundation Gala I plugged my phone into my computer to charge. I was waiting for one of my friends to get there and so I decided to look at the files that popped up. 2 years ago when Spence and I got a phone plan together he got a cell phone that didn't take the mini SD cards and so he gave his to me. To my knowledge everything was deleted off of the card and we started fresh when it was put into my phone. 

I guess I was wrong!

As I was searching around the 10 plus folders to my phone and the SD card I ran across pictures and one video that Spencer had saved! The pictures, I know, met a lot to him and were special to him because they were ones of his family, a few of me, and some that I had sent him of me. There was even one of a pea pod that he sent me one time when we very first got together! =) I vaguely remember that pic. Just a pretty cool thing to find the pics that were important to him. Pics that I didn't realize that he had and which I was sure were just gone forever.

But a picture that really stood out to me and nearly put me into tears was this one:


The picture of the set-up of the flowers and candles the night that Spencer asked me to be his wife <3 I have a few pics of the cabana from a distance, but I never got to see a picture of how things were set up like that..... and I completely forgot what it looked like - I can just remember how shocked (and oblivious) I was that night! Haha.
Isn't it just beautiful =) They did a really great job setting up. It just brings back such a wonderful, wonderful memory. Now if only someone had what he said to me that night recorded we'd be golden, but alas it wasn't recorded.

I really don't think discovering this photo could have come at any better time. It was almost like it was meant to be, really. Spencer proposed to me at the Starlight Gala in 2010 at the hotel, outside in one of the poolside cabanas. Naturally I was missing him when I got to the hotel for the 2012 Gala on Thursday. I did think of the last time we were at the event and the amazing time that we had. I missed him being by my side. I just missed him being there and really wished that he could have shared the moment with me again. And then low and behold this picture pops up - perfect. What a GREAT memory. =)

I also found a video that he had saved. There was only one. One evening my brother-in-law John was driving through Bird City and he stopped to say hello for a bit. We went to a local restaurant and just chatted. Spencer, of course, was very jealous of this and so John decided to record a video of me talking to send to Spencer. I can't believe that he saved it all of this time!!!! =) It must have meant a lot to him. Here it is, kind of hard to understand me without the volume up quite a bit, and the quality is terrible.... but the memory makes me smile. =)

video

As I said before... it really is the little things that seem to happen at the perfect times!!!!

Friday, May 11, 2012

Rambling Thoughts...

Oh boy.... gearing up for a big, and probably my last, trip starting tomorrow! Tomorrow I'm going to drive the lovely 11-12 hour drive to Salt Lake City to spend a week with my friends, apartment hunt, visit Spencer's grave, and walk at the Great Strides event for the very first time! On Thursday I will be going to LA to speak at the annual Starlight Gala!

I feel like a lot is going to happen in such a short amount of time and I am definitely nervous. I'm going to be getting out of my comfort zone for the third time since I lost my husband. I had a BLAST when I went to Colorado and then had my best friend Emily stay with me! We had SUCH a good time and made a lot of memories =) But those ten days were really overwhelming for me. I realized for the first time ever that I am just so lonely - even around my best friends. I'm glad that this is only going to be a week long vacation, but I'm just nervous that my emotions might get the best of me. Is that a bad thing? No, it's not. But I also really want to be able to enjoy myself, not worrying about anything, not always feeling lonely amidst great company. I'm bummed that every time I go and do something I feel this way. It's a reminder that things aren't the same. That I have to adapt to this new life.

I'm planning on getting in to SLC on Saturday night. While I'm there I'm staying with my best friends, Christine & Adam. Monday and maybe Wednesday my friend, Kristin and I are going to go apartment hunting to see if we find anything that might work! I'm really excited about this - but also nervous as I'm being reminded that each day is getting closer to starting this "new" life. I'm SO ready to move back out there - but I'm really uneasy about it because it's change. And change for me, right now, is scary and nerve wracking. I hope that we are able to find something that will work for us! While I am in SLC, at some point I will be meeting up with a couple of my in-laws... Aunt Lisa and Uncle Paul to catch up and get them their riddleofcf t-shirts that they ordered, and I'll make a stop to see my brother-in-law George, and whoever else might be there.... Game night? Perhaps... we'll have to see! It will be really different. I haven't seen them since Spencer passed away - it'll be difficult, but something I can't avoid forever. I want to see them, of course, I just know it'll be hard.

On Thursday morning I will fly out to LA to get all ready for the big Gala! I'm meeting Emily there so that we can hang out that day. I'll do a sound check at some point in time and we will probably just sit in the lobby or something and scout out celebrities ;-) I'm not exactly the type to drool over celebs, but if I am going to be amidst them, I'm going to take it in and see how many I can spot =) On the other hand, we may just lock ourselves in the room and not come out until Go-Time -- Time will tell! This is also going to be a difficult, yet exciting trip. The last gala that I was at, Spencer proposed to me. Thankfully it is not going to be at the same hotel - but it is just the circumstances that are going to be so similar. I'm sad that he won't be there and that my mom and sister aren't able to come... It'll be emotional.

I will get back to Utah mid to late afternoon on Friday and who knows what kind of things will happen then. On Saturday is the main reason that I'm going to Utah. I cannot wait to actually participate in the Great Strides walk to show my support for cystic fibrosis! I have fundraised for this for a couple of years now - but to actually walk is going to be a whole new experience for me. Again - it will be emotional, no doubt! To be amidst CFers and to be supporting a cause that I am SO SO passionate about is going to go over and beyond my emotional breaking point i'm sure. But I am so excited!

And of course I'm WAY excited to see Adam and Christine. I feel so comfortable around them and I can express anything that I need to. They are so sweet and good to me. We always have such a good time together. And I'm so thankful that they always open their doors to me when I am around. Best friends ever imaginable. I don't know what I'd do without them!
Christine just graduated from college and I'm super proud of her. She's had a rough semester because she's been SO busy! She had both a job and internship which usually required her to work 7 days a week. Wow! I don't quite know how she did it! They are now just waiting to start a little family hopefully in the fall! =) I'm excited for a little baby Soderborg!!

I am hoping that I can go and visit Spencer's grave while I am there... I know it's going to be really busy with something going on every day - but I do hope there is at least a couple hours I can take to visit... we'll just have to see how it goes. If not I guess it's not a huge deal as I'll be back in 2 months to MOVE and then I'll be able to visit whenever I need to.

Anyway... those are just a few of my rambling thoughts for the day...

Oh and hey!! You should also check out www.riddleofcf.com for a new poem of Spencer's that I posted, "Conner's Wings" and a few new news articles that I posted in "CF News" under the "Cystic Fibrosis" tab. ALSO you should join in on the daily facts and weekly challenges that are posted for CF Awareness Month!!! =)




Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Emotions and Thankful

I have been a ball of mixed and complicated emotions these last two weeks. One moment I am sad, but the next I am laughing. I don't think my emotions have varied so much! With my grandpas funeral this last Saturday I know I am on an emotional high. It was a beautiful service, but a very difficult day. Each person I have lost and each funeral I have attended since my husbands passing (2 funerals, 3 deaths) has been so hard on me and it seems like each one just gets a little bit worse. I feel numb for awhile, and then everything hits.
I'm just sad that I've seen 5 losses in less than a year.
I had a break down the other night. I just completely lost it. Anger took over and then sadness filled in. I reconnected with my mom a little bit and it definitely helped. I'm trying my best to remain open and talking about every emotion that I feel.
Today I was reading one of my grief books and realized that writing about my feelings can be just as good as expressing them verbally... Just as long as I'm not keeping it in. And even though writing hasn't been easy for me since Spence passed away, I feel like I am able to express myself a little bit better through the written word. I'm so thankful for this. But I'm just praying that I can continue on with being expressive instead of holding it all in.... I feel like I've been set back a little bit lately with all of the loss and my internalization of everything, I have to keep moving forward. It's okay to take a few really dark days, it's even expected, but much more than that is not healthy. I can tell because I really start to get in a funk.

But with my emotions being everywhere recently - I am feeling very thankful tonight. I don't know exactly why or what came over me, but a huge since of gratitude hit me. I'm so thankful for the group, CF Wives on facebook. I have met so many amazing ladies from this group and I have received so much support from all of them. I don't know what I'd do without my girls! I am thankful for the support of my family - with every loss we all come a little bit closer to each other. I'm thankful for the talk that my mom and I had the other night when I was at a low point. We haven't been very communicative lately due to work schedules and being so tired all of the time... not to mention grieving we are both going through. But it was finally nice to be able to sit down and talk to her with real emotions. I haven't had a long talk with my mom in SO long... I've missed it and I've missed her. I'm thankful for new opportunities. I'm feeling hopeful for my future (which doesn't come very often anymore!!!!)... I know that things will work themselves out and I'm trying to enjoy this moment of Hope because it never lasts very long! The next thing I know I'm sure I will be worrying about money, food, places to live, jobs... you name it. I'm thankful for having a job right now. I know how hard it's going to be to find a job when I move back out to Utah - yet it's going to be critical I find one within the first 2-3 weeks that I am there. So I'm just thankful that I have at least something here.. And I love watching "my" little girl! She's such a sweetheart!  I'm thankful for the thoughts and kindness that is expressed to me. I was told that after a month or so a lot of the direct message and cards and carepackages were going to stop. I knew that I had such a huge support group behind me and so I wondered if that would be true. well, sure enough - it is true. I don't get many messages anymore. I haven't received a "thinking of you" card in about 3 months now. That's okay because I know that everyone has their own life to think about, but those kind messages and cards, and even txts mean SO much to me. They usually come at all the right times. I really appreciate when people take the time to send me something. It gets pretty lonely and it's always nice to know I still have support, friends, and people who care =)

I am also thankful for a couple of messages that I've received that have stated how much I've inspired them.... or how thankful they are that I am in their life. I've only gotten a couple - but those 2 or 3 messages have REALLY meant SO much to me. Truly brightening my whole week. I have yet to respond to them because I just don't know what to say - I was/am just so touched.
It makes me feel good that I can help someone else out. =)

But I am going to stop there because I am getting tired and I need to get some rest... but I just wanted to express some of my feelings and my gratitude to everyone. =) Even though life kind of sucks right now, I'm so glad and blessed that I am able to see the good out of it!!!!

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Grief

Grief changes so much. So much of who you are, who you become. Your thoughts. Your actions. Your every move. Whether we want it to or not - it effects us in ways that we never imagine that it will. Just when we think that we're over a certain part of grief - it comes back and hits us at full force. Just when we think that we're seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, when we see love and this wonderful thing called hope - a horrible cloud of darkness roll over and doesn't let us see that light.

Grief is suffocating. It drowns us. The pain that it causes is unimaginable to those who have never experienced a deep loss. The fear and uncertainty that it imposes is overwhelming.

It makes us forget, makes us angry. Makes us feel sadness and hurt more than we ever think we will feel. In that brief moment when we see the light - it makes us love deeper. More appreciative of what we have. More kind and caring. But when that light isn't there - it's a dark, suffocating friend.

It changes our interests. Makes us become uninvolved. Those things that we once lived for and loved doing are now a thing in the past for awhile. They don't seem to have a purpose anymore. Finding new things to love is very much out of the question for awhile as nothing seems enjoyable. How can it?

Grief changes your every emotion. At times we're left unfeeling. Numb. Wondering what this life might possibly have in store for us. Upset because we're unable to cry, to laugh, to hurt, to rejoice. Unable to be happy or sad and we desperately wish to feel. But then when grief causes us to feel? It causes us internal pain that physically hurts, emotional distress that frightens us, overwhelming urges to cry and scream and shout. But those cries and screams and shouts don't even do justice to the intense excruciating internal heartbreak that we are experiencing. No matter how hard we cry - how loud we shout.... it almost doesn't even feel worth it to exert the energy because it can't possibly convey the message we are trying to express. So when we aren't numb - we pray we are. We pray desperately for some relief of emotion because it become unbearable. It's a cycle. A cycle that does not end.

It is always one extreme or another. The frightening part about it - it is 110% beyond our control. How we feel from not only one day to the next, but one moment to the next is completely unpredictable.
The emotions that we experience are bipolar. One moment we can be laughing and enjoying ourselves - but in the next moment we have tears streaming down our faces because a memory is brought up by one single word or sentence. By an action by another. We can be sad, but in the next moment burst out into laughter because of something someone says.

But one thing that doesn't change... even if we are in a moment of bliss - is that we're always hurting. Always lonely. Always missing something that absolutely cannot be replaced. Always thinking about that one special person in our life that should be there at any given moment. Sure, some times are better than others - but there is always an internal hurt.

Grief is such an unknown territory for many. The feelings associated with grief are not quite new feelings - but they are feelings that are intensified to a very sensitive and new level. This causes us to hold things in. To internalize many things because we don't know how to deal with it. We often cannot find the right words to say out loud because there simply ARE NOT words to convey how we feel. This causes bursts of extreme sadness with tears erupting from our eyes one day at the grocery store because we ran across our husbands/loved ones favorite candy bar....
extreme guilt when we wonder if there was more that we could have done at any point of time
and moments of pure anger when someone does something that makes us mad even if it has nothing to do with our loss.... we bottle up anger when we're mad about the person that we lost.... but it turns into anger at another person even if they didn't do anything, or even anger at God.

All of these can be equally as bad.... but anger tends to get me the most. I don't know how to properly express being angry... I'm not an angry person. But I find myself oftentimes very upset and mad because my husband is gone. Because we are not happy together like we should be. Because we are not enjoying marriage. Because he is not here to help me through. Because he. Is. Gone. I internalize this anger like no other emotion and it often times erupts at people unsuspecting. My voice raises once and it's like the snap of a finger - I'm a completely different person. A person that I do not know or recognize. I'm yelling and screaming and becoming deeply hurt. I later regret it and it turns into guilt. And then I'm terribly upset because I cannot control my feelings.

A cycle. It's always a cycle.

Grief tests everything that we believe. Everything that we KNOW to be true. It causes us to second guess everything. Every action. Every thought. It tests our memory. Our faith. Our love. Our strength. Our hope. Everything.

It is exhausting. Grief takes everything out of you.... After the loss of a loved one that hits you really deep, you're always tired. Your emotions are always running high. Being around people takes so much effort. After a couple of hours you're more than ready to be by yourself to meditate. After being around a crowd of people - you feel like you've run a marathon. I can't quite explain it - but it takes more effort than you can even imagine to be around someone....

Grief causes unneeded fear. Fear of the future. Of moving forward. Of enjoying new things. Of forgetting. Fear of the unknown. We're scared to take a next step in our lives for fear that we will fall back into a pattern of deep grief. Fear that we will be lonely forever. Fear that we will never be happy again. Fear that our grief has scarred us so much that we cannot continue. It's hard to move forward when we're leaving our deeply beloved behind. So much known. So much uncertainty.

I reiterate that this kind of grief cannot truly be understood unless one has experienced a very, very deep loss.
These are feelings that we feel on a daily basis. Does it get better with time? I'm sure it does. They say that time heals. I've heard many stories from those who have moved forward and are living fulfilling lives. But it is different for every person. The timeframe of grief is undetermined and impossible to predict.

For me - it's been 5 months since my biggest loss - but I've also experienced 4 other losses within less than a year. I haven't had a chance to grieve with one. I've really had no opportunity to grieve, let alone heal. I moved home for 6-8 months hoping to be able to grieve hard and begin to heal - that's hardly been the case. Little did I know I'd be losing 3 more people I love dearly.

I've spent most of my time anticipating death of those I knew were getting ready to leave their mortal lives. It all seems too much to comprehend. The losses are much to immense. I am trying to give this time. I am trying to be patient, but I am not dealing well with my grief. With my losses. My body is putting up a wall to protect me and it's hindering my grieving and mourning. I say that I am doing okay under all the circumstances - and sometimes I really feel like I am handling things well - but it's moments when I grieve hardest that really show me just how much I am internalizing everything. Just how I am NOT grieving well. Ask people around me - I hardly ever show my emotion. I hardly ever talk about it. I am trying to move forward. But moving forward without allowing myself to grieve DOES NOT HAPPEN. I am realizing this. I'm learning. I'm trying to open up. I'm trying to express myself at every given opportunity. I have become SO closed off to everything. everyone. This is completely unlike me because I used to be so expressive and always shared how I felt.
When I feel sadness, I want to express that. When I am feeling guilt - I want to understand why. When I'm angry, I want a healthy outlet to let out my anger. When I'm hurting, I want my friends and family to be there to hold me. To listen to me. to cry with me. To support me, love me, and reassure me. To tell me that it is okay to feel the way that I'm feeling.

There really isn't a great way to end this except for saying that this has become my life. It will not always be my life - but it is for right now. How can it not be? And this is the life of so, so many. More than you probably realize - because you see our outward appearance and facade, not what we are processing and dealing with on the inside.