Hi, my name is Mare, and in the #NameItDontNumbIt campaign, the first thing that came to my mind is grief.
Grief isn’t something that we talk about a lot in our culture, but it is rampant. We’ll all experience it, whether it’s grief from the loss of a loved one, grief from the loss of a job, from things not turning out as you expected, grief because of the pandemic, a collective grief that we’ve all been feeling.
It’s something that we don’t talk about enough. And there also seems to be this inaccurate stigma around grief that it has a finite amount of time. And I can tell from my own experience that’s not the case. I lost my dad when I was 19, almost 20 years ago, and I still grieve him. I still miss him. And I don’t ever want to not grieve his loss because, in my opinion, that would mean that the love was gone.
We also have this weird thing where it’s like, “Oh, that person passed away so many years ago. Aren’t you over it yet?” No, I lost my husband four years ago and after about two years of being a widow, I said to my therapist, “It’s still hard, I’m still suffering.” And she said, “I think you need to reword it… You need to think of it like it’s ONLY been two years, not it’s already been two years, why am I still so upset about this?”
Now, it’s only been four and it’s still hard. So I would love you to name it, don’t numb it. The grief is not going to go away. The sadness, the pain. It’s not going to go away. We need to name it. We need to honor it. We need to allow ourselves to feel it and work through it.
I think it’s OK to still be sad and it’s OK to be happy at the same time. Two things can be true. That’s another thing that’s really difficult with grief is, well, if I’m sad and grieving the loss or grieving this pandemic, how dare I feel happiness? But those two things can be true at the same time.
Stop beating yourself up that you’re sad. We’re all sad. We’ll all experience this. But if you numb it, that makes it worse. You suppress it and it’s going to manifest physically. It’s going to manifest in your relationships.
Deal with it, be kind to yourself and don’t forget to name it, don’t numb it.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Mare is a best-selling author, podcast host, inspirational speaker & entrepreneur. She is sharing her journey as a widow and mother of a child with specials needs with the hopes of making others feel less alone.
Listen to C MHA Kelowna’s recent podcast by Discovery College called What Really Works? Where hosts Beki and Olivia discuss the different kinds of grief and what we can do to support ourselves and another person who is experiencing it.