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Good Grief...

... or not so good. Learning to live with grief, is one of the absolute hardest lessons a person can ever experience. There are moments when you’re fine, and then some when you can feel every ounce of yourself falling apart. There are days when you want to stay home, scream, and cry, but you keep going. And there are days when you actually do stay home, scream, and cry. I have had those days; 316 days later, I still have those days. In fact, I'm sure that I have cried more in the past ten months than I have cried in my entire 35 years of life (and it is rumored that I was a crybaby… yet to be proven **eye roll**). Want to know what’s tricky about it? It’s usually the days that you wake up and feel you’re good that it catches you off guard.

One Tuesday, I had a terrible meltdown, not the first and I’m positive it won’t be the last. I woke up and prayed. I got some reading in and had my coffee, took a phone call, and and even made breakfast. I was ready to start my day at work. No sooner than I got off the phone, did I start crying… out of nowhere. Nowhere. I couldn’t catch my breath and could hardly move. I cried and screamed for, literally, two hours straight. No breaks, no calm… just yelling, just crying, and feeling as if I was hyperventilating. Once I was calm enough, I got dressed and left my apartment to head to work. The drive there was solemn, and I made it with no music, one phone call, and puffy eyes. By the time I'd reached my office, I was okay enough to go inside. As soon as my butt hit that office chair, though, it hit me all over again. My boss said “hello” and I had to choke back the tears in order to return the greeting. I stepped out, called a “lifeline” (it’s important to have these people) to say that I wasn’t doing so well, and sat on the bench outside the building. It had rained so it was a little muggy and my eyes were itching because, well, allergies. After I gathered myself, I went back inside to get my work done as quickly as I possibly could. I headed home that day feeling sorta empty; like I had used everything inside of me. Now, although the crying was over for the moment, I had a wracking headache, my eyes hurt, and the remainder of my day was a bit dreary. My appetite sucked and I barely ate all day. It was as if that grief cloud just wouldn’t let up. I felt grief had won.

On Wednesday, I noticed that I had a much better day. The sun was brighter (it seemed) than it had been. I felt pretty good and my appetite was more normal than before. I didn’t cry and I didn’t scream that day. My breathing was easy, and I didn’t feel as if I were hyperventilating. I decided not to go to work though, I needed a day for recovery. But what a difference a few hours make, right? But what I couldn’t help but think about was that although Wednesday was better, I had lost an entire Tuesday to sadness. As I continued my thought process, I realized that after every bad, there is a good. Now, it may not be the good you’d prefer, but there is one. I realized that through all the heartache, headache, and struggle, there has got to be the better days that everybody tries to convince me of. See, Wednesday’s sunshine let me know that Tuesday’s rain couldn’t last forever. It also reminded me that I will (we will) always have rough times but we will always have better times that will help us cope. I am fully aware that the grief will probably never end, but it won't always win. It'll lose some days.

I am currently coping. Prepared, yet very unprepared for the next meltdown, the next time I’ll cry for hours at a time. Grief doesn't come and go; it just comes, but so does relief. But I know that those moments won’t always last and I’ll make it through each of them. And you will too. And don't spend the good days dwelling on the bad days. Rain will come, but so will the sunshine.

Love y'all,

A.M. White

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