I awoke with a very intense stomache ache this morning. I really was in a lot of pain. The only thing that helped was doing the self compassion practice I read about yesterday in Christine Neff`s book on self compassion. I then found the twisting pain that went right up inside my gut began to abate and turn into deep sobs, sadness and tears.
I realised yesterday that I was ‘running’ a fair bit. I had a lot to get through and had two cups of coffee (which I really didn’t need). After going to the Jimmy Barnes talk I felt sad and then a little out of place in the gathering afterwards. People talk at such a detached level about deep soul suffering that sometimes its hard to be a part of it knowing all I know. I was also really worried about my Mum who I rang yesterday. She told me she had blood in her faeces but after a very stressful day when I she had a problem with her car battery and not a lot of support, so I went around to see her after the talk and that broke my heart. There is so much grief there under the surface at this time of year.
Add to this I contacted a friend who lost her Mum in September and she sent a brief mesage back saying she has had a lot of support and is doing fine. That triggered a lot of pain for me. I felt how alone I have been as I grieved with no support after my father died and so many other losses. It hurts a lot. My family are so selfish and so self involved none of them pick up the phone and my sister who I called twice last week to support prior to a trip away has returned, visted my Mum twice and not called me once. I feel so isolated at times.
I see that in that isolation and support I reach out to support others when really it is I that needs the support. It hurts that I have been so alone. Even last night in at the talk I was crying because partners never recognised my deeper wounds and gave me the emotional suport that others in recovery get. It really really hurts at times to be so alone. There I have said it and not stepped in with inner critic voice/thought to shut that gut truth down. I don`t care if it sounds like whinging. At the same time I do acknowledge that our ego cannot make demands of the world and in the end as adults we do need to find the love and support inside.
In the midst of writing this Mum called to explain that due to the bleeding she is going for tests. I just cried the whole way through what she said and I said Mum I really feel in my gut this is all about grief and the pain and distance we have gone through. I know you need to get it checked out but I wish we could deal with all of these grief feelings that are around at this time of year. Mum really listened and we had the best talk. We both cried together. She explained how much of a front my sister keeps up because she is scared of unmasking her deeper vulnerability. I felt so sad about this as this defence mechanism of hers keeps us so distant and I long for a loving sister who would openly unburden and share. But then I realise that its not realistic for where she really is. Saturn in Scorpio in her chart shows she fears being hurt if she opens up or shows vulnerablity and this is what happened when she had her breakdown so its no wonder she self protects. I need to have more compassion.
I was very lucky to get into AA in 1993 and be able to be with those who were being open and honest about pain. insecurity, abandonment and fear. My sister never had the critical emotional support either after her husband left and she had a breakdown her sons organised for her to be committed to a psychiatric facility. Mum and I had to watch it all unfold and see my sister go through shock treatment all because she was labelled
mentally ill when really she was in abandoment depression. It was so very painful and then she tried to take her life.
I realise that taking care of myself in my grief, being real, is the only solution I have when I find myself or my body in pain. When I take care of myself in my own grief I find a gift and the gift of that care is that I can recognise and give care to others who are grieving too. We all need help with this grief because as a society we have a lot of it. I believe as Marianne Williamson does that anxiety, grief and depression are not illnesses as such but valid reactions to life and trauma. We need self compassion as we navigate this tough terrain. We need to psychically enfold ourselves in a compassionate hug as we do the work to feel what our souls are crying out have noticed, validated and felt.
We don`t need to give ourselves or others a hard time. We do have the inner resources to deal with our pain, we just need the help to find them deep inside from those who in practicing and living with self love and self compassion are able to give us this guidance and in helping us understand grief, loss or abandonment feelings will help us learn how to better take care of ourselves in the midst of them.
6 thoughts on “Taking Care of Myself in my Grief”
I’m so sorry you’ve had such pain, and with your mum going for tests too.. You have written so compassionately, and I think you should be proud for seeing the other side to this especially when you have felt so isolated (a feeling I can empathise with), the side that focuses of kindness, gentleness and self-care. Sending a big hug your way ♥
Thanks so much for those kind wishes, Caz. I feel so sad for my Mum at times. Compassion pratice helps me to soften and not hurt my own body due to that frustration over things I cannot change. I hope you are feeling well. Love Deborah ❤
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Thanks so much for the kind words.