I should preface this with a warning that there is a strong chance I don’t know what I’m talking about and I have no idea if this will help either you or me, but it’s worth a try.
So nearly a year ago I lost my beautiful Mum to cancer after an incredibly short battle and I’ve been struggling more and more ever since. I know it’s not a unique situation to lose a parent, but I’m 27 and if there is one person I somehow never expected to lose it was her. As clichéd as it sounds she lit up a room, she gave herself to others completely and she really was a beautiful soul who deserved so much more time than she got. However, this blog is not about her (as much as she deserves heaps of love, praise and attention), but it is necessary for me to acknowledge how I ended up here…and her loss and my grief were the tipping point.
I have spent the best part of the last 10/11 months doing my best to avoid everything, life, friends and most importantly feelings and memories of her. Now as I am sure many of you know this is not a healthy thing to do for neither the mind, body or soul. But, it is what I have done and continue to do, in order to survive and try to support those around me: my siblings, my dad, my grandparents, our family and our friends. For me, I achieve this by staying busy, by planning, by laughing, by cooking, by reading, by cleaning…you get the drift. If I’m watching TV I’m also on my phone and my tablet or reading, I have to keep my mind distracted, always. This only works 16/18 hours a day, although there are frequent interruptions from my mind reminding me of painful memories of mum’s last weeks or something awful I said to her one time or simply a time I didn’t say Goodnight or I love you. But still, interruptions aside, it works for me, sort of. The real problem is, the remaining 8/6 hours are at night and when we sleep, for me at least, that means no distractions. So I either stay awake and distract myself or I try and sleep and allow a continuous tidal wave of feelings to unravel me, to break me again and again. Sometimes I eventually sleep and sometimes I don’t. Either way, I still feel like crap in the morning.
The problem with this method of avoiding grief is that I’m not avoiding it, clearly…I’m probably prolonging the pain, and it’s really starting to affect me. I’m pretty tough and I don’t show my feelings very often, particularly to others, but I’m starting to push people away more and more, and I feel I’m losing grip a little on life.
So, this blog is way of trying to face it, not the grief – not yet, but the way I am living. By acknowledging the way I am dealing with everything (or rather not) I am hoping that I can start the process to accepting my loss and grieving.
At the moment, I feel like my past, my pain and I are in a shipping container that’s lost at see and sinking fast. Maybe, if I unpack and deal with some of the pain and memories I can get back to shore, and eventually move forward with my life and hold my past and pain in just a backpack.
So, moving forward this blog will be my process and journey there and I’ll be grateful for any life jackets, buoys or other floatation devices you guys can throw at me along the way. (For those not following my ramblings and I suspect that’s most of you, I would just love any tips, support and advice you can give that might help me on my way).