Turn back the clock to early January 2009,. I was happily married, it was a new year, I was eagerly awaiting the arrival of my poodle puppy – Lulu, Maarten and I were making plans for the year and life was pretty cruisy. We were finally starting to enjoy the next phase in our lives, the kids were out of the house doing their thing, both our businesses were going well and for the first time in many years we knew we would be ok.
And then BANG!!!!! Without warning, Maarten passed away suddenly in May, he was gone…. Just like that. How was I going to live, how was I going to carry on with my life? He was my world, my soul mate, my everything. And, just like you I fell apart. I fell into tiny pieces and had no clue on how I was ever going to become whole again, if ever. I found myself in this dark, dark, well of grief with nowhere to go (or so I thought).
After the fog had lifted and I started see a bit clearer, I knew I had to start healing me. Maarten loved me and would not have wanted to see me in so much pain. He would have told me to get on with my life and live. I began working on me. Working on healing me from the inside out.
Grief does not heal, we heal first….. then our grief heals. It’s like the chicken and the egg, what comes first? If we wait for grief to heal on its own, without making any effort to help ourselves, we stay stuck in our grief forever, unhappy, afraid of life and lonely.
The Myth of “It takes Time”
What is “IT”? I asked myself this question over and over, it takes time, it will be okay, it is normal, it is sad, it is emotional, it is not okay etc etc etc and so “IT” goes on. My life changing moment was when I realised that “IT” is me… it is not my grief. When I replaced “it” with “I” my world changed. My grief healed because I started my journey of healing ME not my grief.
When you replace “IT” takes time to “I” take time, you take charge of your life and your grief healing journey.
The Power of the Present
The present is your point of power. As a wise man once said, “Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment.”
You can never change the past. You can never solve all potential future problems. But you can deal with the one challenge or opportunity that is right here, right now. And you do that best when you are calm and centred.
Be like a mirror. A mirror beautifully reflects the present moment, the now. It is not stained or tarnished with the images it reflected yesterday. It does not think of the images that it reflects. So often when we are hurting, sad and upset, we are not in the present. We are regretting the past, or anticipating the future with anxiety.
All of this built up energy causes di-ease and dis-stress in our present, today ,now. Here’s the thing, we cannot change the past, no matter how hard we try, we can only love and cherish our past.
In his wonderful book Peace is Every Step Thich Nhat Hanh wrote,
“The most precious gift we can offer others is our presence. When mindfulness embraces those we love, they will bloom like flowers.”
Questions to ask yourself to Heal You
- Are you fully present in the now? Calm, peaceful and centred? (If not, take a few deep, calming breaths right now.)
- Is this painful thought about the present? Or it is a fearful anticipation of some possible future outcome? Or is it about the past?
- Is this upset emotion about the present? Or is it regretting something that happened in the past? Or fear about something that might happen in the future?
- What’s the reality of the present situation? It is true? Are you sure? Where is your proof?
- Can you change this?
- What are the possibilities here?
- What choices do you have? Is now a good time to think about it constructively and productively? Or are you worrying, fretting or stewing at 3 am? Worrying is not thinking.
Our life, our grief healing and our future is a series of small choices and decisions we make every second of every day. Mostly unaware of what we are thinking and choosing. We are on auto pilot.
Your present moment is the path to your happiness. You can only ever choose the things you want in your present moment, in the NOW. What are you going to choose today, that your future self will thank you for?
Imagine living and loving to the fullest. What would that be like for you?
If you think you are stuck in your grief and you want to heal you, schedule a free breakthrough call with me where we will go through where you are now in your grief journey, what’s keeping you stuck and where you want to be. https://meetme.so/DeniseDielwart
Denise Dielwart – Widows Living Beyond Grief and Loss