The week has felt much like being in a washing machine. Each time I come up to the surface, I get pulled back into the depth of water. It is astounding to me how the waves of grief and loss can hit so randomly. In one moment, I was cleaning the house and joyously watching my son play and the next moment I was sitting in a corner and sobbing. The end of November triggers some cellular memories of the impending holidays and it casts a gloomy shadow of darkness over my emotions. Being born in December and having divorced parents made the month a crappy one from a young age. To cope, I took up a job and began working in hospitality ensuring I was always busy over the holidays. Looking back now I am able to reflect on how “business” was my very first addiction. Leaning into this reflection and allowing the memories to surface took me into some very painful, dark places.
As I sat with the darkness of my interpretation of Christmas, my thoughts drifted to my son. As he begins to show more and more excitement in the season, I start to play more holiday music, I decorated a tree, and I have been reading Christmas books. As the Hallmark channel begins to play holiday movies, it brings to light more pain and deep shadows. The majority of the stories are about couples, and families with two parents. Watching my son take all of this in, it was no surprise when he began asking more questions about a daddy. For now, we have landed on that I am his mommy and his daddy, and we are unpacking that in the fashion of a 3-year-old. We will sit with that as long as we can as we both wish upon a Christmas star for our family to grow and feel complete. Until then, the wish and effort go into feeling complete just the way we are.
While I sat with these murky feelings, I felt myself fall into a spiral of negativity. I could feel the weight of pain, shame, guilt, and I let it consume me for most of the week. As the feelings took me up and down through the spin cycle, I finally found the strength to reach for my tool belt and employ the pause button. As I allow myself to process the emotions, I am choosing to move through them and not let them move me. I have reached back into my holistic knowledge and turned to Motherwort, Vitamin D, probiotics, omega oils, and ketones to support my physical body. I am using yoga, breath, and meditation to ground me and give me an outlet to stretch those emotions throughout my body so they can be released. I am sleeping more, and slowing down so that I can honor the pain without living it. So that I can turn up as complete and hold space for my son in the family we have built and so that I can be somewhat emotionally regulated while he processes his own feelings about our small family. Knowledge is power. I am leaning in.