Ask The Coach with Karen Morrissey
When I lost my partner four years ago, a friend was very supportive. We began an intense relationship, even though he was living with someone else. He said they were just good friends, and that he couldn’t leave her, then later he told me if I wait two years things would be different as his mortgage would be paid off. We’re now in quarantine and I haven’t seen him for 2 months. I am realizing everything is on his terms. In the last four years I’ve also lost my mom and another good friend which made me feel as though I needed him. I’ve now given up on him but I am not sure I have grieved properly. How do I move on? Name supplied
We experience grief and loss throughout our lives. Its impact is often far more significant than we initially realize, more so understand because it is uncharted territory for all of us.
Grief is a natural reaction to a significant emotional or physical loss. The loss attributes to several things –– a loved one, a relationship, a family member, a beloved pet, a job, or a friendship, to name a few. Both grief and the accompanying feelings and emotions of loss are uncomfortable. They can be challenging to grapple, especially when they are as significant as you have shared with a partner, mom, good friend, and a relationship.
While feelings of loss are normal, coupled with grief, they can be confusing, even isolating because raw heartache often feels like we are carrying a tangled ball of emotions within that we don't know what to do with, let alone decipher. The array of emotions we experience while navigating grief and loss is often exhausting because emotions are energetic vibrations. You can feel disoriented, depressed, or the truth of a situation (when you're grieving) overshadows a circumstance due to our vulnerable state of being.
Most of us, this in part due to the norms of society, condition ourselves to absorb our stories of loss rather than share them, which is why your question is so invaluable.
When we experience sorrow, it can't help but become a part of our story unless we release it. Instead, we suppress our feelings and implement coping mechanisms hoping our grief will dissipate over time. Mainly, we carry it, layer it, and even bury it in our bones, unknowingly allowing for its resonance to sometimes to have its way with us.
Several years ago, my husband died. I'd experience loss of loved ones before, although this time, I couldn't untether from the barrage of emotions. Something more was rumbling within. I reached out for support. What I uncovered was astounding – I'd diminished my feelings of the most profound loss of my life, my mother. I was young, so scared; I didn't know how to release my pain or have a clue how to ask for support.
For years after her death, I walked on eggshells when memories of her were shared. As a result, I conditioned myself to absorb the sufferings. I hadn't understood how deeply the loss affected me until I needed to do so. This revelation led me to see how I'd also harbored and suppressed deep sorrow after a painful divorce because of my self-conditioning.
You see, when we're grieving, we want to be ok and even emotionally stable, but we're not…and this is normal. We also want to move on. But unless we journey the supportive arc to release our pain and allow ourselves the space of awareness to understand our grief, it will be discombobulating.
We'll walk, yet stumble. Considering the disharmony you described, the isolation of quarantine, and the personal losses, it sounds like you may not have processed your grief.
Here are some considerations that will assist in working through your grief so that you can move forward:
- Allow yourself the time and space to grieve your loss. Seek a supportive process with a grief coach or support group. Ask questions to see if the coach or group is right for you.
- Commit wholeheartedly to your well-being. Don’t hold back, share truthfully and be receptive to suggestions. It will assist you in being fully supported as you gain awareness and understanding of how grief and loss have impacted your life.
- Take the time to Self-Soothe. Create a compassionate self-care practice. Indulge in a healthy diet, nature walks, meditation, journaling, and even a light yoga routine. These practical measures will significantly benefit as your process and release your grief.
I've often shared 'grief is broken-hearted-whole-hearted love' because somehow, it always offers us a few noteworthy and unique perspectives on life and love that we carry with us.
Those who have passed on will always be a part of our hearts. Memories, too.
Supportive measures assist us because that's what they're supposed to do. Know that, with time and support, you will be ok. You can count on it.
Yet, there is an absence and a void to fill, and the only one that can fill it is you.
Make yourself a priority as you process, because you're worth it.
All the best!
Karen Morrissey is the founder of Awakened Forgiveness™ She is an Intuitive, Mentor, Visionary, and author of the soon to be published book, "Awakened Forgiveness, a journey of generational grief, grace, and gratitude." After uncovering her mother's generational trauma decades after her death, she understood her unhealed wounds. She realized you couldn't forgive what you don't understand.
Today, she helps women identify the generational pain in their own story and inspires them to step into soulful healing.
For more details visit www.karenmorrissey.com