“We are grieving, We are not contagious, We are not sad all the time, We laugh, We smile, We cry, We weep for being happy, We live, We talk, We feel, We come from every background, We are sad, we lost a baby, We are…” -Jennifer Davis
“How are you?”
It’s such a simple question, but there’s rarely a simple answer.
I always give the same answer, “I’m doing alright, there are good days and bad days, but I’m ok”
And then there’s expectant silence. No one knows how to respond. Some people are relieved by this answer, and awkwardly change the subject. Others stare at me, seeping pity, as if trying to x-ray my brain to see how I’m really feeling. Still others begin to ask leading questions in hopes of tripping me up to reveal my true feelings.
Except there isn’t more to reveal. My answer is true.
I am ok, but the pity and leading questions make me feel awful, like I’m somehow not grieving properly. But really, I’m just grieving in my own way.
I think of Sarah every single day, but it doesn’t always make me sad. And when it does, I give myself permission to have a sad day. I make something easy for dinner and I spend my day snuggling Spud and reading a good book. And of course Hubs is there to be my listening ear, my crying shoulder, and my pillar of support.
Dude and Spud talk about Sarah several times a week and I think talking about her frankly helps with the healing.
Sometimes, I think people expect me to be constantly weeping or breaking down at the very mention of Sarah. I may occasionally get teary eyed, but overall, I’m a pretty private person and I save my tears until I’m home with Hubs.
I love the quote at the top of the page, because it rings so true with me. Just because I have experienced loss does not mean that the only emotion I feel is sadness. True, I may feel sadness more than I did 3 months ago, but it’s not all I am.
I give myself permission to feel joy, I give myself permission to feel sadness. I give myself permission to laugh, be angry, to smile, and to take a mental health day.
And to others. You can ask me about Sarah and ask me how I’m doing. If I’m up for talking about it, I will. If I need to cry…well, you’ll know! If I don’t have much to say, it’s because my heart is beginning to heal. Sarah will always have a special place in my heart. I will always love her, I will always miss her, but my loss does not define me. I am still me.