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How to Identify Sadness and Prevent Despair

Seven years ago, I lost my best friend, my Mom. She passed away peacefully in the morning, and the moment it happened will be forever etched in my memory—as if it happened minutes ago. No words will ever comfort that loss; no one thing ever does. So how do any of us move through and keep going when a loved one passes away?

Grief and loss come in many forms throughout our lives. Is it the life that we once had planned that never worked out? Is it the new garden that didn't quite make it this year? Or memories of our loved ones that we swore that we would never forget, yet somehow they've slipped away?

I remember some of the most challenging times after Mom passed away: not hearing her voice or the cool touch of her hand. Going back into the grocery store or pharmacy that I took her to and 'seeing' her wandering through the aisles (I still do seven years later) would put me into overwhelming sobs. Last week, I saw one of the cashiers at the local store that said, "I was just thinking yesterday about how much I miss Miss Christine." It happened to be a day I was thinking about Mom so much that it took my breath away.

Being gentle to yourself during those difficult days is imperative. You need to be able to let go of emotions stuffed up inside before they damage you mentally and physically.

Some of the things that I found to be beneficial for support are:

  • Journal your feelings. Write down your joys or sorrows instead of stuffing them down

  • Reach out to family or friends and let them know how you're feeling

  • Do something that you and your loved one used to do, honoring your time together

  • Read something inspirational or listen to music that gives lightness to your heart

I had guilt over my grief and was afraid to talk about it in the early days after losing Mom. Today when I have those moments of sorrow, I let myself go through them but don't hesitate to reach out or make a shift in my day. Please, give yourself the gift of self-care when these times arise.

I love you always, Mom. Forever in my heart.

Hugs, Cyndi Mariner

Breathing Spaces

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