For those of you who know me, I wear my heart on my sleeve, I talk openly about my grief and I thought I would share some thoughts about grief and emotion with you all...
Mothers day is almost here, and every advert I see makes me cringe, I find myself turning the TV over or scrolling quickly past Facebook posts, not because I think it is pointless but because it is a constant reminder that my mum isn't here.
Social media can be a wonderful tool for marketing a business or keeping in contact with old friends across the globe... but it can also be upsetting for these type of occasions seeing people so happy whilst you are aching to feel that happiness again. Last mothers day was a blur as it was only 4 weeks after my mum passed but this year seems so real.
I hadn't really been affected until last week, I walked into the supermarket with my other half, I stopped at the mothers day gifts, and I said to him "Are you going to get your Mum a card today?" That second it really sunk in, it hit me like a bolt of lightening, as if a switch had just been flicked, he must have a sixth sense as he put his arm around me and said not today and carried on walking ❤
I know so many of my ladies I treat will be struggling leading up to Sunday for many reasons from losing their dear mum, losing their precious child, longing to be a Mum or losing a soul that had other plans in the universe.
I'm not sure about you, but I know I have been difficult to be around this last week, especially to those closest too me. My fuse is short, my emotions are high, and tears are easily flowing.. however I accept that these things are normal and I ask my loved ones to just bare with me.
Sunday will be a tough day for us all, but just remember...
❤It is ok to do absolutely nothing
❤It is ok to avoid social media completely
❤It is ok to stay in and avoid bumping into cute families
❤It is ok to feel upset and let the emotions out
I have decided to spend the day by myself shopping and I am going to buy a new charm bracelet, then on every Mother's day, Mums Birthday, Christmas etc I will buy a new charm to go on there. I personally need to see a visual reminder that I never forget and never will.
Why not take a moment to plant a bulb in the garden or a fruit tree as a beautiful memory, and watch that blossom over the course of the year.
When Mum passed, my cousin sent a wonderful message to me (he had lost his mum the previous year) and I will share it with you...
"Alright, here goes. I'm old. What that means is that I've survived (so far) and a lot of people I've known and loved did not. I've lost friends, best friends, acquaintances, co-workers, grandparents, mom, relatives, teachers, mentors, students, neighbors, and a host of other folks. I have no children, and I can't imagine the pain it must be to lose a child. But here's my two cents.
I wish I could say you get used to people dying. I never did. I don't want to. It tears a hole through me whenever somebody I love dies, no matter the circumstances. But I don't want it to "not matter". I don't want it to be something that just passes. My scars are a testament to the love and the relationship that I had for and with that person. And if the scar is deep, so was the love. So be it. Scars are a testament to life. Scars are a testament that I can love deeply and live deeply and be cut, or even gouged, and that I can heal and continue to live and continue to love. And the scar tissue is stronger than the original flesh ever was. Scars are a testament to life. Scars are only ugly to people who can't see.
As for grief, you'll find it comes in waves. When the ship is first wrecked, you're drowning, with wreckage all around you. Everything floating around you reminds you of the beauty and the magnificence of the ship that was, and is no more. And all you can do is float. You find some piece of the wreckage and you hang on for a while. Maybe it's some physical thing. Maybe it's a happy memory or a photograph. Maybe it's a person who is also floating. For a while, all you can do is float. Stay alive.
In the beginning, the waves are 100 feet tall and crash over you without mercy. They come 10 seconds apart and don't even give you time to catch your breath. All you can do is hang on and float. After a while, maybe weeks, maybe months, you'll find the waves are still 100 feet tall, but they come further apart. When they come, they still crash all over you and wipe you out. But in between, you can breathe, you can function. You never know what's going to trigger the grief. It might be a song, a picture, a street intersection, the smell of a cup of coffee. It can be just about anything...and the wave comes crashing. But in between waves, there is life.
Somewhere down the line, and it's different for everybody, you find that the waves are only 80 feet tall. Or 50 feet tall. And while they still come, they come further apart. You can see them coming. An anniversary, a birthday, or Christmas, or landing at O'Hare. You can see it coming, for the most part, and prepare yourself. And when it washes over you, you know that somehow you will, again, come out the other side. Soaking wet, sputtering, still hanging on to some tiny piece of the wreckage, but you'll come out.
Take it from an old guy. The waves never stop coming, and somehow you don't really want them to. But you learn that you'll survive them. And other waves will come. And you'll survive them too. If you're lucky, you'll have lots of scars from lots of loves. And lots of shipwrecks."
I will be signing off from social media Saturday.. but I will be sending all of you lovely ladies the biggest hug. If you do still have your Mum give her an extra big squeeze and never take her for granted.
In the words of Ed Sheeran
"When God took you back, he said Hallelujah you're home"