Grief is indeed a holistic experience. Mind, body, emotions, spirit.
I breathe in. I breathe out. Consciously. Letting go of pain, opening up to Love. Opening to Life. I go all Zen about it and try not to try while doing it. I just let it be whatever it is, with no judgement. Yup.
Or I dig in and allow the flood of emotion. I allow the force of memories (all good ones) and let the grief wash through me, stabbing and drawing blood and gushing forth devastation.
Physically I push myself out into the world, meeting new people daily, learning a new environment as I tow my rig and camp for the first time in my life. I’d like to say I exercise so I seem all virtuous and stuff but I’d by lying. I know exercise is a helpful thing during grief but I just can’t get there. Mostly, I don’t even remember that it’s an option and secondly, there is an over-riding exhaustion in me from doing the first two things from the top of this blog and my body and mind don’t align to get me out there to even do a meandering walk. I could push myself to push through that probably, with a great deal of focus, which is something I also seem to have lost since Handsome Husband died.
Nutrition? Vitamins? It’s hard enough to do with a home base, never mind living on the road. I don’t have a clue.
Papers get lost, even though I intentionally place them in the most obvious location to be found. Things I know that I possess scatter into the stratosphere, to be found again purely through chance. I plot routines in order to make habits, only to forget them or, if I write the routine down to remind myself, I then lose what I wrote. Including if I noted it on my computer. Passwords to various links swirl in my head, lost and found intermittently.
Phone calls that need to be returned. Emails that need response. The best intentions on both until they join the morass that is my brain these days. (So, please forgive me for that phone call you didn’t get from me).
Some of this can be blamed on the full-time traveling lifestyle I live. Small space, attempts to organize, followed by the feeling that I’m lucky I can find my keys to drive at any point. Most of it I attribute to grief primarily because I used to be really well-organized and competent.
So I go back to trying to breathe, which I haven’t done well since my husband died. I try to feel joy in what I’m experiencing (because there is cause for joy, after all). I try to feel contentment. Or serenity. Or anything other than grief but those emotions are intellectual exercises for me and can’t seem to make their way past the acid lump in my throat or the meat-slicer that resides in my chest or the exhaustion that sings through my veins or the heaviness that is my body or the maelstrom of devastation that is my self. And I hate that I’ve lost who I was and have no concept of who I will be and I hate that I have to be me without him but that’s what I’ve got.
I was a strong woman with a solid sense of myself for the 24 years I was married to Handsome Husband. We had an interdependent relationship and I felt strong within it and I mourn the lost me. Because I feel no strength in this new life, I have no trust in it and honestly, I don’t care about it or a future. I’m in this moment, surviving and trying to remember where the fuck anything is.
Which is why I give myself the FWG image to live into each day. It’s the only thing I do remember to do. I remind myself that I can do this because I fucking have to do this. Period. End of story.
Grief isn’t for wimps.