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  • Writer's pictureCoach Candi

No Matter How Impossible it Seems

For many years, the holidays and certain days of the year triggered an emotional response and sadness within me that I couldn’t articulate even when asked what was wrong with me. I would laugh and feel joy with my loved ones, but I would also feel immense pain about hands I couldn’t hold, a piece of my heart that was missing, and a broken heart that I couldn’t explain. Each year, the pain would exist, yet I knew I had to accept that certain days, memories, moments…would inevitability always be tough for me and that would have to be okay. I also had to be okay with the fact that no one would be able to understand my grief but me. Others wouldn't understand why it would consume me, leading to my shutting down at times or causing me to act out at others. Depression may not have been the word I used during those moments when I hurt, but now I can call it by name.

I believe, over time my healing has come because I have connected more closely with the little girl who managed to laugh and write her way through her sadness. I’ve channeled some of that real (and at times false) positivity so that I could go on. And now, at this point in my life, my sense of self and resiliency has led me to adopt healthier ways to cope with super sad things. I now have a peace that I never thought would be possible for me.

So, let’s do a hard thing together. Let’s recognize the pain. At this moment, as many make plans to celebrate, gather with family and friends (safely, of course), and reflect on all the reasons to be grateful, I know that many of you I love and care for are hurting. This year has been a year of great loss. And, the reality is, no matter when you felt that initial loss, all that has happened this year has managed to reopen many wounds for us. There has been a great loss and there is great trauma in that loss because this year, many of us couldn’t even be there for one another in the ways we would have liked to be. Even if you haven’t lost anyone, you feel the loss. You hurt because others are hurting.

But, what if I told you, that you can acknowledge your sadness, and still smile. You can cry and still laugh. Pain may have changed you, but it doesn’t have to take your joy from you. Grief and happiness often coexist together and that is okay.

So, as you move through the next coming days, please don’t allow your sadness to close your eyes to love or your pain to change your ability to see the good around you. You don’t have to dread living your life anymore and listen, you don’t have to do ANYTHING. If reading in your bed gives you peace, do it. Watching a movie brings you a smile, watch it. Reflecting on memories and going through photos brings you joy, please pull them out and have that moment. As often as you need to. Create a new normal. A new family tradition, a new way of being. Do that. This year has taught us nothing stays the same and nothing has to. You have a right to ask that people respect your choices, your boundaries, your space. Choose to exist in a new way, just please...exist.

I need you to know that there is no right or wrong way to grieve. I’m not telling you how to feel, I’m not telling you what to do. I don’t want to placate you or minimize your pain.

All I’m saying is, I see you. I feel you.

I love you for real.

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