Embracing and Acknowleding Grief

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As I waited for my husband to take his final breath, I cried desperately because I knew that my life would never be the same. His heavy labored breathing distracted me from any further thought. There was a seven second pause in between each breath. I waited for eight seconds, but he was constant at seven seconds. I held his hand as he took that final breath, I made a choice at that very moment, that I would never allow grief to rule my life and steal my joy.

Grief is a very personal experience, and there is no right or wrong way to grieve. However, we, those of us battling the grief and sadness in widowhood, have to pick ourselves back up and get back in the ring of parenting. We must not give into the darkness, the anger, the paralyzing thought that our families will never live beautiful fulfilled lives again. Those thoughts will haunt us and keep us living in the past, preventing us from the gifts of the present and robbing us of our future.

There are no accolades for how long and how much we suffer, sometimes the only thing gained is more suffering. When we choose to live life beyond our loss, we are not dismissing our pain, we are actually acknowledging and embracing it, and it takes great courage to do that. We are unconsciously teaching our children how to overcome adversity in the midst of pain. We are teaching them that we can dance and be grieving, that we can laugh and be grieving, that we can be still and be grieving and most importantly that we can also choose to live our life with joy and be grieving.

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