As we get ready to end this year and start a new year a good question is, “What Is Your Future?”
In the earlier stages of grieving, our energies were directed to the basic things around us such as getting through an hour, a day, a week. Now, suddenly, the years are flying past! The daily routines of our physical world are taking on a new look.
For some of us, a move to different housing became necessary; others rearranged the furniture and changed the landscape. All of us sorted out the pieces of our lives. Slowly, unconsciously, we changed our lifestyles to fit the new roles we have taken in life.
Dare we say the word “alone” in a positive way? Wow! We like this feeling of confidence. Consciously and unconsciously, many lessons have been learned during this journey. We have found joy in these simple pleasures: a grandchild’s birthday; a picnic with family; the first snowdrops of winter; an unexpected shopping trip with a friend.
In a strange way, we have accepted ourselves as individuals who have reinvented themselves. There is a difference in each of us as we proceed along our journey with new hope and pride. Gradually, we stopped running and faced the reality of our new lives. For each and every one of us, life definitely changed! The courage to make these changes came from all the talking, sharing, and support we received as we rearranged our lives.
We must try to use the energy that we felt in dealing with the pain of the past to plan for our future and to work consciously to generate a healthy lifestyle for ourselves. It is exciting to feel that we are functioning and are perfectly capable of becoming whole people on our own terms.
Although there are still times when we feel alone, we have developed the capacity to ease the pain and loneliness, each of us finding a unique way to cope. It appears that there is no definite framework of time, and yet it seems to be a major factor in achieving an acceptable level of inner peace. We all move forward at different paces, but the main thing is that we continue to keep moving. Good for us!
The first few years can be pure hell and yet they can contain the beginnings of new enjoyments. These enjoyments start out slowly and require nourishment to grow. When you’re in the midst of your loss, you may not notice these gleams of light. You may not be paying attention to these newborn sources of happiness, but they are there and some day you will be ready to receive them.
Mary Francis, The Sisterhood of Widows
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