on grieving and healing, part I

How are you possibly still dealing with this?  How long has it been?  Don’t you think it’s time to move on with your life?  Just put it in the past and look forward?

Have you not thought or spoken like this to others or even yourself when dealing with pain?  I think we understand that grieving should happen…but maybe we think we mustn’t prolong  it?  Eventually you’ve got to just get over it, right?

Here’s the issue…we can’t just make ourselves “get over it.”  Of course the goal is to be able to live life more fully and to be able to look at past hurts without feeling such immense pain.  But “just getting over it” isn’t how it works.  Grieving and healing.  That’s not how life works.

We can’t put a timeline on things like this.  Grieving and healing.  

Yes, there are constructive things we can do to help us on our journey of navigating and dealing with pain, but there is no formula.  Wouldn’t it be easy if there were a timeline…3 months for a death…2 for a break-up…etc etc.  But that is not real life.  It’s not.  And we’re not robots.  (thank God)  No one person is the same, so formulas are moot.

In fact, I believe our efforts to try to hurry up and just “get over it” often hinder the actual healing that could be taking place.  This is what the cycle often seems to look like:

I seem to be doing okay one day when BAM, this pain feels fresh all over again…”Katy…why are you back-pedaling…haven’t you gotten past this yet?  Why can’t you be stronger?”….shame shame shame…which really is a form of self-hate.  Think that’s extreme?  Look again at that self-talk.  Does that look like someone who loves and cares for herself?  On the contrary…and if this mindset is left to it’s own devices…it will spiral into despair and utter hopelessness.

THIS.  This is just the kind of environment that will NOT help me to find healing and freedom, but rather inflict more pain.  Do you see it?  But how normal is this kind of self-talk?  It’s actually quite alarming how harmful our attempts at helping ourselves or others can be.  I often think we genuinely don’t know any other way.  I know I didn’t for most of my life.  But there is another way…

                             the way of grace.

I believe another issue is that we think healing will come once-and-for-all and that will be it.  The issue will be resolved and will affect us no longer.  Rather than seeing healing as a destination, I find it more beneficial to see it as an ongoing continuum…one that ebbs and flows…a journey in which we learn to ride the waves…

a beautiful journey in which we learn to ride the waves of grace…

what do you think?

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