My posts seem to be tinged with a little sadness at the moment, but I guess it’s just the way life is at times, and don’t we all have to take the rough with the smooth as we work our way through this amazing, beautiful, scary thing called LIFE.
Life isn’t a permanent smile on a social media selfie, however much a little internet surfing can make us feel that it should be. It’s a complex mix of Sadness and laughter, Sorrows and Joys, Births and Deaths, Fear and Overcoming. We all know that it takes ‘Sunshine and Rain’ to make a rainbow, and life is equally as colourful. It’s this patchwork of emotions and circumstances that make up the rich tapestry of our lives, each complex square stitched together with threads of love and endurance.
One of the squares on my life’s quilt will have the word ‘MUM’ running through the stitches like a stick of rock. My mum died two years ago on the 1st June, and I still think about her everyday. Life after death is a path we all have to tread when we loose someone we love, it can be a long, and difficult journey, and unfortunately not one that we can avoid or decide to take at another time, however much we might prefer to postpone it.
For a long time there was a gaping hole, a rip that only time could mend. Sometimes its tempting to make a quick repair and hope nobody will notice, but just as any seam sewn quickly and without care, would sooner or later fray, so a heart that is broken needs time to mend and there is no easy or quick fix, especially in matters of the heart.
Grieving takes time. To begin with the loss of our loved one is the first thought each morning, and the last at night. Days can feel like weeks as we begin to work our way through the intensity of our emotions. These are the days that we need to make our self-care a priority. Taking some time each day to do things that bring comfort and peace can help us cope, along with trying to eat well, and getting a good night sleep. These things may be difficult at first but as time goes by they do become a little easier… honestly. We begin to make small steps towards recovery, and each new little burst of sunshine in our daily life helps to slowly dry the puddles of sadness that we are wading through.
It’s a time in our lives when we need the support of those closest too us. Just a hug or a kind word of understanding can do wonders for a grieving heart. Human touch is powerful and healing. We could all benefit from more of it on a daily basis, but for someone who is grieving just a hand-held, an arm touched or a hug given can often bring greater comfort than words, and allow space for a little sadness to be relieved. Tears at this time are tears of healing and far better out than in.
Noticing the beauty around us can be really beneficial, and help to bring us into the present moment. Mother nature is around every corner, waiting patiently for us to be ready to acknowledge her. At first we are often too engrossed in our sadness to be able to do this, but as time moves us on we begin to see and hear all her amazing handiwork once again, and gradually we are drawn back into life.
The loss of any parent is hard. My mum moved up to be near me in her later years and within a couple of months we found out that her days were limited. We didn’t even have time to adjust to living close to each other before we were thrown into a myriad of appointments and specialists. We then had to adjust to the fact that we were saying a very long goodbye, knowing that the end was near, but not knowing when it would be.
I’m so thankful that I was with her on her final journey. It wasnt easy and there were times when I would have happily postponed it or decided to take a different route if that had been an option, but I know I did my best, and knowing my mum, that is all she would have expected of me.
I love you Mum x.
Love Alison x
Patchwork quilt made with love by Raye Smillie.