The strangeness of grief

Hey all,

So lest my last post go unexplained, I want to talk about something that I sort of wish I had captured in the midst and yet only feel ready to talk about now.

Now, I am exceedingly blessed to have lived my entire life with almost no reason for grief. I’ve had pets die or given away and I lost a grandma I wasn’t terribly close to in third grade, but other than that, I have never lost anyone super close to me with a singular event.

So, that being said, when I recently found myself in a position where I felt it was time for various reasons for me to leave my dance studio, I can honestly say that losing the relationships as they currently stood with the people I love there was really my first great encounter with grief. I know that sounds a bit dumb, that the fact I no longer dance as a student there doesn’t mean I can’t be friends with them and just have a different (and likely even better) kind of relationship with them, but in the midst, it honestly felt like I was losing them all forever, as if I was stripping myself of a giant fistful of people that I have come to absolutely cherish and who have had a huge, tangible and unchangeable effect on my life with nobody to blame but myself. Now even while I was dealing with this I knew that the above statement wasn’t true. I know I’m prone to feeling guilty for things I shouldn’t, for over-exaggeration and dramatics for things that aren’t a huge deal, but that doesn’t change the fact that it hurt in a way and to a depth I’ve never experienced before.

The weirdest thing about grief is its constancy. My experience lasted from about a few weeks before I left up to about a week before my last day, and in that time I felt absolutely heart broken in ways that when asked, as I often was, I couldn’t even put into words for sometimes hours if not days at a time. I knew I wasn’t really losing them forever, that my life was still exceedingly blessed, that God gave up way more than I ever have when he sent his son, that leaving was what I needed to do, yet even with all of that unquestionable knowledge I was just sad, for hours, for days. As someone who usually lands pretty high and level on the emotional scale, with most negative emotions working themselves out in short angsty blasts, a sustained sadness such as this was entirely strange. And sometimes it wasn’t sadness. Sometimes I was angry, frightened, empty, every one of them at the same time with no control of what or when I would feel. Several times I almost cried at work, often I cried at home. One day I remember sobbing in my car while I was driving, just absolutely, uncontrollably sobbing, like you’d read about in a book.

And I knew it was what I needed to do. I needed to grieve. As much as I didn’t like feeling emotional volatile, didn’t like feeling that well of sadness pressing up in my chest, or the exaggeration or the internal romantic (as in romanticism, not romance) drama run out of control, I also knew that it was important. I had to be honest that I was sad to lose that season in my life, to lose those relationships with no guarantee of a future. It was a difficult choice with huge repercussions, and as much as I wanted the pain to be over, I also knew I had to deal with it, to take the time to actually work through it.

Now, in that time, God was also exceedingly faithful and gracious with me, bringing people, opportunities and conversations that I really needed into my life at just the right times, and I was very lucky to reach the acceptance stage of my sadness before I left so I didn’t have to sob on everyone’s shoulders on my last day, but I wanted to be honest about what it was like so that if anyone else is grieving they know they aren’t alone in the experience and also because I want to be honest and share what my life is really like, even when it hurts. So, if you’re grieving, have had a similar (or different) experience and want to share, or have anything else to say, please, leave me a comment below. I’d love to hear from you.

Until next time, love,

Abby

3 thoughts on “The strangeness of grief

  1. Kim July 26, 2015 / 9:05 pm

    I should have read this before I saw you today. Do you think this is just a season and that you might get back into again or do you feel like this is a turning completely?

    • brainnoms July 26, 2015 / 11:04 pm

      If I’m being absolutely honest, I probably won’t go back to that studio. I love the people there and I always have a good time (hence the sadness), but when I compare what I can get from them both as a dancer and a human vs. what I need as a human and dancer, what I feel God is calling me to do with my time, money, etc., how much I would have to pay to continue being there and how much time it takes away from those other things I need, need to do or have (I tried moderation, but I lack self-control, haha), it’s really just not a good fit anymore. I would doubt very much if it’s the end of my dance road, even if it’s just something I end up doing for myself when I’m alone in the kitchen (which is definitely a thing that happens now). I’ll still help you find a good fit for your dance needs though! Heck, I might even be able to teach you a few things myself! 😀 Thanks for reading, Aunt Kim. I really appreciate how faithful you are in following my various roller coaster rides. ❤ 🙂

      • Kim July 27, 2015 / 6:39 am

        It sounds like you have made a wise decision and the Lord will have much more for you.

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