Two years of growing from crawling out of the pits of hell. It was dark, it was hard, and it was dirty.
When I lost my husband in January 2020, I felt as though my life ended. The grief and pain were indescribable. I could not breathe; I could not sleep, and I could not function. I spiraled mentally. I slowly fell into the rabbit hole. I found alcohol was a source of retreat for me. I drank more than I had in years.
Shortly after he died, we went into a worldwide lock down which was supposed to last two weeks. Now two years later. Grieving alone and confined was one of the darkest and most difficult times in my life.
He died in January and in June I decided to leave our home. I moved into my camper for a few months. Our life was now in storage. Memories in many boxes. Life that was supposed to be, hidden away. In November I moved into my mother’s home thinking that would be a place of regeneration and healing, it was not. It became darker for me, and I retreated deeper within my grief. I stopped eating well, stopped exercising, stopped giving a shit.
In May of 2021 I went to my trailer for the weekend and stayed there. It was a place where I could begin the slow and brutal journey of recovery from my own self. Every single step was like climbing a mountain. It was painful, pulled raw emotion to the surface but forced me to face my demons head on. I was focused on destroying those bastards. I survived by embracing the amazing friendships and support at my campground. Every single person placed into my path during those dark times were there to lift me, hold me and push me… even if they did not know that. For them I will always be eternally grateful.
"but forced me to face my demons head on. I was focused on destroying those bastards"
In August I became sick with what I thought was the flu. It ended up being a dead gallbladder that had poisoned my blood and made me septic. They determined I only had days to live. I lost a lot of blood during surgery and my liver enzymes were high and hemoglobin dangerously low. They risked it and operated anyway. Did you know that the gallbladder is the organ associated with unresolved anger and grief?
I made it through surgery and into recovery. That is where the real work began. It rocked me to my absolute core. It pulled me into myself, and I begged God to let me live after I asked him to take me so many times in the past several months. For once I wanted to live, I wanted to have a future and I wanted to grow. It forced me to focus on what mattered, what I needed and my daughter. Seeing her watery eyes begging me to live, forever changed me. It rocked me to my absolute core. In that moment I started giving a shit again.
The recovery process was brutal. There are no words to describe the physical and emotional pain you go through, but I kept putting one foot in front of the other. I forced myself to do 500 steps, then 1000 then 5000 then 6000 and so on. Every single step was to me, a ladder out of the pits of hell.
I then made the decision to move closer to my daughter and found a place that was mine. For the first time in 35 years, it was about ME. It was about finding what my soul needed and what I wanted for myself, my future and my family. It was a huge pivot.
I started hiking and pushing myself further and further every time, Yoga and Pilates and back into my deep meditation practice. Every single day I make myself move, clear my head and visualize what my new normal is. I completely changed my diet and refuse to fill my body with crap that screws with my mind. I started laughing again.
The human body is an incredible machine. My last physical was spot on. All blood work normal ranges, my resting heart rate perfect. Liver fully recovered and hemoglobin perfect. It is nothing short of a miracle really.
This week I was really feeling a bit deep and wanted to talk to the new me. The fighter, the warrior and the girl who just wanted to live. I wanted to tell her she is a rock star. I stood and looked at myself in the mirror today and looked at my stomach and held it knowing it grew the most incredible human who in reality, saved my life. The scars from my surgery which are so horrendous, but that surgery saved my life. I was grateful and humbled.
So, a letter from my old me to the current me and to the future me. You can over come every single obstacle, you can always get back up, you can always hold gratitude. It may be a really shitty time BUT you and only you can pull yourself out. You need to want to… I mean really really, really want to. Find your passion and find your purpose. You will be so very happy you did.
I have been very public about the whole grief journey, and this is the last and final post about it, because she is gone, she grew through it, and she blossomed into a beautiful butterfly. I have grown and I have conquered one of the worst internal wars imaginable. I survived.