I’m in a constant state of falling apart and picking up the pieces.
From the minute I was being wheeled out of my hospital room, I let myself surrender to the heaviness of sadness. The unfairness of leaving without Jensen was overwhelming. I wanted to scream, but no sound came. Instead, tears flowed so freely and I couldn’t stop them even if I tried. While we were in the elevator, I kept opening and closing my eyes wishing that when I did it I would finally wake up from this nightmare. When I sat in the front seat of the car on the way to my parent’s house, I felt like I was in a vacuum. In this vacuum, there’s no outside noise or reason. There’s just me and my uncontrollable thoughts. After we got home, I realized that I would never be able to fight off the pain and sadness. I promised myself that I would accept whatever feelings and emotions came my way.
I surrendered myself to sadness, anger, pain, depression, and even joy.
Sometimes I wish I didn’t. There are moments in life where feeling everything so intensely isn’t ‘acceptable’ or ‘normal.’ Yet, they’re right there. Sadness and pain are always reachable for me. Almost everything in my life right now can be set back to, ‘If Jensen was here.’ I love being able to imagine it, but breaking down at a restaurant when they ask how many people are eating and I always have to say one less than what’s in my heart, is unacceptable. Those moments I can breathe through. In the few other times where I’ve felt like I had to hold it back and tried to force another certain emotion, grief came back around in a few hours times; one-hundred times worse. Worse as in, the emotions were just more intense where I literally can only lie there.
Those are the dark moments where nothing but evil is in charge. When thoughts of dying and wanting to claw out of my body set in. No one has ever seen me in that state. I’m sure others have seen the glaze over my eyes when it just begins, but not the limpness and catatonic state I slip in. Believe me, when that comes, it stays all night. I don’t surrender myself to that; it takes me prisoner.
So, I embrace surrendering to the range of emotions as the come to me.
In many of my conversations you’ll see me laugh while I’m crying or cry while I’m laughing. I protect my heart as sadness hits. When I’m angry I scream or create. If happiness finds me during the day, I go out and run errands. I’ve found what I’m productive at when each emotion hits. If I’m in public, I always have an escape plan if it hits hard. I tell people as soon as I’m with them how I’m feeling. It helps them and me know what might be coming. With each, I’m just trying to figure it out.
This surrender and embracement is exhausting, but it has helped. It’s let me be aware of most (not all, never all) of the triggers around me. I am made aware of the deep pit that opens in my stomach and I give myself a minute to surrender, then can move on. When the intense pain hits, I surrender myself to all of it and it comes then goes as needed. I’m not saying I’m comfortable or fully embrace these emotions, but feeling is helping me heal. There will never be a time where I’m comfortable or embrace Jensen’s death. I don’t see the beauty in him dying. That’s why there’s the pain, sadness, and anger. On the other hand, his life was so happy and beautiful. That’s where the bits of happiness come. I’ll admit, they’re not plentiful. Maybe I’ll be happy once a week, if I’m lucky. This way of life has left me feel ‘okay’ after the intense emotions pass. I can survive on okay.
Grief is not an inconvenience, it’s just my new way of life after loss. A constant awareness of emotions is what my surrender and embrace of grief looks like.