Have you hit your turning point?
Every month I wonder if I should stop writing for Still Standing. It’s not that I don’t want to write, it’s that I feel like maybe my voice isn’t resonating.
As this beautiful magazine has grown and evolved, writers have come and gone, as their losses move further into the past, getting woven into the quilt of their current lives, the need and desire to sit down and draw on this pain is less constant.
I wonder if that is my fate as well, but the fact is, I don’t want to stop writing. Because I believe there need to be voices of “after-after.” Voices not currently swallowed in pain.
Because if we are constantly allowing ourselves to be swallowed by the pain, we may forget that there is beauty. There is light. There is meaning and joy and life- whole and complete life after loss. If we let there be.
Recently, a friend of my husband asked him if I was doing OK. “Yeah, she’s doing fine.” my husband replied. Attempting to be thoughtful the friend pressed, “but really, I mean, is she doing OK? I see her Facebook posts and… ya know…”
My husband explained to him that I was, actually, doing well. Talking about the babies I lost is part of my life now. It’s part of what I do.
And it struck me that to people in the “real” world, I may seem like I am still ‘wallowing’ …or whatever you might call it, while to people in the grief world, I may seem “healed” or …whatever you might call it.
Over the last 4.5 years I’ve watched many women travel this road. I’ve read, listened, learned and sometimes offered advice from my experiences or shared a perspective that perhaps could make a difference to someone. And I’ve identified a point that all of us either hit, or eventually spend our days treading water striving to hit.
It’s the turning point. The point where you stand up and say “This happened to me. It is unbearably sad. But my sadness, my anger, my grief- these things do not define me. I define me.”
It is when they hit that point that things start to change. Though they may be very much still in grief, they channel their energy into positive, forward moving things – things that are meaningful to them, often charities and businesses. Though they still may not understand “why” this happened, they begin to ask themselves, sometimes subconsciously, “For what did this happen?” and then they go about creating an answer.
For some women, this happens right away. Sometimes before they’ve even said goodbye to their baby- as soon as they learn they will have to. For others, like myself, it happens when the shock wears off, a few weeks or months even a year after the loss, after grief has become a familiar friend. And yet for others, it doesn’t come. They watch as loss-mom friends “move on” from their grief, seemingly onto a “normal” happy life, integrating their loss into their world in meaningful ways that empower them. Many seem to “find themselves” – their purpose, their passion, in the midst of their grief.
I believe every single one of us has the potential to emerge from loss empowered. I believe many of you probably believe it too, but may be asking “how?”. I believe that the fires of our grief have potential to ignite the world. And I believe that the first step is standing up and declaring “This happened to me. It is unbearably sad. But my sadness, my anger, my grief- these things do not define me. I define me.”
If you are ready to stand up and say that, if you are ready to make the choice to define you– your beauty, your strength, your meaning and your purpose after loss, I invite you to join me and Dr. Julie Bindeman, a 3x loss mom and psychologist, for a Free 7-Day Mother’s Day Muchness Challenge that begins May 4 and ends on Mother’s Day of this year.
Mother’s day is a huge trigger for so many of us. We created this challenge to help you face Mother’s Day with a new sense of optimism, strength and promise.
You are a baby loss mom and that alone makes you amazing. We truly believe that just one week can change your journey through grief and help you reconnect to your inner light, step into your purpose and find your Muchness. Please let us help you do that. Click here to learn more.