Yolanda has been gone from this world almost 3 years. Sometimes it feels like yesterday and other times it is a blurry past. It would be easy to assume that the handling of grief has become easier, truth be told it hasn’t it is just different. The “Grief” monster is still there and as much as I believe I have made some progress it assumes another shape or existence within my life. I guess the learning out of this is to be adaptable to whatever shape or size “Grief” decides to throw at me.
Being involved as a GriefShare facilitator, trying to give back to those who are walking a similar journey, it would be easy to assume that I might have become hardened to the constant knocking of “Grief” on the lives of others. Truth be told it has made me softer, it has made me more aware of the pain and anguish of others. I am however extremely grateful for this. In some way I believe feeling and understanding some aspect of their pain makes the burden lighter for them.
The help and guidance that I received, the non judgemental acceptance, the insight into the whirlwind of emotions I was experiencing as well as the practical advice on how to cope was and still is priceless. This past season of GriefShare was done under some extremely difficult circumstances due to all the lockdown restrictions. However seeing how those who arrived hurt, angry, confused, disillusioned and completely broken in spirit slowly and bravely take the steps to move forward has been most rewarding.
As the Christmas season creeps it way into our lives I can’t help myself from wondering what “Grief” has in store for me. I am certain there will be painful memories of days gone by, painful reflections on what could have been and the eternal sense of loneliness. All I know is that I can only invite “Grief” into my Christmas season and say I know you are there, I know you will try to ambush me, I know that you will rejoice when some days I feel like I can’t go on. However I know that I am not alone, others have walked this path before me, others will follow along this path at some stage of live. We are not alone. I hope that by accepting and welcoming “Grief” that I won’t be surprised or shocked by my emotional and mental state but rather understand that this is all part of the journey.