mental health, wellbeing

Grief is a part of you

Everybody hurts sometimes, everybody cries

R.E.M

I thought that lyric was an appropriate opener for this particular post, still as I write this whilst listening to that fantastic song and sipping on a cup of herbal tea I’m not sure which direction I am taking this topic so bare with me.

I always thought grief was this weird shadow which followed me everywhere in life and now I realise and have come to terms with the fact that it’s part of who I am. I’m not currently in a state of depression however it does come back in waves, even now, in forms of grief which I have fully accepted into my world and I am no longer scared to be sad or emotional. In fact, I love a good cry, I feel so much better a lighter once I’ve cried but that for me is how a release emotion. I’m a ‘wear my emotions on my sleeve’ type of person, sometimes a memory or a song can just tip me into experiencing sadness, I can cry and not judge myself for it.

I have a few select people that I am comfortable sharing my sadness with, some because I know they understand how I feel and others because I have so much trust in them, I know they won’t judge me and will be there to comfort me. I love having that support system there however its taken a lot of time and again trust to share my feelings with others, my deepest and darkest secrets which is my grief. You might worry that people are going to judge you, won’t understand how you’re feeling or will feel sorry for you (which use to be a big one for me!) and sometimes grief and depression wants you to feel like that, it wants you to feel alone and lock those feelings up but that’s because it’s coming from a place of fear and shame.

People feel that grief is something that will go away and maybe I was one of those people, but as I get older and creep closer to 30 I feel my grief becomes stronger and more raw each year. Sometimes a good memory or thought will trigger me to cry. Not because I’ve not done any work on dealing with it, I have done a lot of personal development which I think has been integral to have got me to this point in my life, but because time isn’t just a healer it can also make you think. The thought of me having a 30th birthday party brings me to the realisation that my mum won’t be there to celebrate with me, that makes me feel sad. Having loved ones missing from your life who can’t share your experiences, your joy and your sadness can sometimes become harder as you get older. I’ve found talking helps me with this, sharing these thoughts and new levels of grief with my family, boyfriend and friends close to me instead of keeping them locked up . Locking grief away is one of the worse things you can do, you need to give it room to breath and a platform to be expressed, without judgment or fear.

I would like to share with you my personal suggestions on what you can do when you start to experience grief or maybe to give you the confidence to seek further help and advice from a professional.

*Disclaimer, I’m not a professional so your first port of call must be to source professional help, I have linked a few suggestions below*

  1. Help which is right for you – sourcing help which is right for you is very important. It’s a big step admitting that you need help and there’s nothing wrong with getting it trust me, in the long run it’ll make a huge difference to your life! I know a few people who have used the NHS services for mental health and depression which has helped them a lot, this is worth looking into however I do think there is a waiting list for this service. Other options are to find a mental health or bereavement charity which can help you two which come to mind are MIND and CRUSE.
  2. Longer support system – something which I think has truly changed my life (and no I’m not exaggerating, it’s the best gift I’ve ever given myself) if it wasn’t for The Penninghame Process I’d 100% be a completely different person still hiding behind sarcasm and also happy smiley Jade, I’d be exhausted! This course is a 6 day intense personal development process which helps you to deal with raw emotions and feelings. I came back from this course two stone lighter and not in weight in emotion and grief which was drowning me!
  3. Self care – this is a very important point, there’s a few things you can do at home for yourself, to help you take a few minutes out of your day to help you cope a little easier. Meditating, sounds stupid or too easy right? Nope, I’ve just started the app Mindfulness which has some great meditations and some are as short as 5 mins! I know a few people who use Bliss Mindfulness as I understand it, this is a class which you can attend includes breath work and visualisation as part of your meditation.
  4. Thoughts to paper – no one is saying you need to write down the boring daily tasks you’ve been doing at work and chores at home this is about how your feeling. If you’ve cried today or experienced grief in another way maybe anger write down how you felt, what triggered off this feeling, did someone say something to you, did you hear a song or see a photograph? This is more to track what is maybe triggering your feelings, this is helpful to take to your theory sessions as well so you can discuss it in further detail.

I hope this post gives you the confidence to seek help and advice for any grief or depression which is happening in your life, it doesn’t have to be fresh it can be a life event which happened years ago. I didn’t deal with my grief about loosing my mum properly until I was about 23 years old and I thought to myself, why did I wait so long to get this sorted! Mental health is such an important thing and we don’t take care of it enough as much as our physical body, why!? Because it’s still a taboo to talk about yourself and your feelings, you know what f**k that! Be selfish, fly your own flag high and know that your own mental health is one of the single most important things in your life!!

Much love x

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