This year has been heavy in many ways. January wasn’t perfect, but it was mostly normal. February stared a series of events that have knocked me off my feet over and over again including the loss of Jared’s grandmother and my dear friend, Abi. I’ve said to multiple friends that dealing with grief must be the lesson that I am supposed to learn this year. Here are a few things that have stood out to me along the way.

Your Community Matters
These 3 are my girls! I have talked to them about literally everything. We first met because we are all in the same Young Living family and love everything related to essential oils and natural living. Over the last 2 years they have become my dearest friends. It all started in 2021 when Abi asked if anyone in the team wanted to do weekly accountability calls where we worked together to build our businesses. We became the faithful four pretty quickly and for a while we met once a day because we loved it so much. We backed down to 2 days a week when we all got busy, but still made sure that those 2 days always happened. When we got word from Abi’s sister 3 weeks ago that Abi (the spunky one in the unicorn t-shirt) passed away unexpectedly, the first thing that happened was a group call between the rest of us. We cried, shared memories, and just sat there together. It was the support we needed in that moment from those who were experiencing the same emotions.

Family and church family are equally important. When Jared’s grandmother passed away in March, the time we spent with his family the week of the funeral was healing for everyone as well. Again, stories were shared, precious keepsakes discovered or chosen to bring home, and lots of tears and hugs. When my family walked through an unexpected health crisis, our church family was there to give hugs, pray over us, and offer many words of encouragement over the two month period where everything seemed upside down. Who you surround yourself with is vitally important!

God’s Sovereignty Supports
I have cried the question “why” to God so many times! Not in an angry way, but from a place of total confusion and grief. I don’t have the answers, but I know He does. I was discussing the feeling of needing to know with someone recently and she brought up that when we get to heaven we won’t even have the need to know anymore. That has really stuck with me. Yes, God has all the knowledge of all the situations, but once we are there with Him, the answers won’t even matter to us. Wow! In the meantime, while my human brain grapples with all the questions and trying to make sense of everything, I can rest in the peace that God is pouring on me that truly does pass all human understanding. I know He works all things for my good even when they hurt. I also keep reminding myself that while I am missing Abi greatly, I have the ultimate assurance that I will see her in heaven. I just wish I knew when.

Taking Time to Process is Necessary
I am a vocal processor and Jared has been a saint to let me talk and talk and talk and talk. There were so many thoughts that I needed to let out. I know from years of past experience that when I don’t sit down and feel the emotions it will lead to worse things. Emotions will show themselves in a physical way if bottled up long enough. (If you’ve never read the book Feelings Buried Alive Never Die I highly recommend it! It’s a thick read, but so good.) Journaling can also be helpful, I haven’t done it in a journal per se, but I have written out messaged to my 2 other girlfriends, typed out lots of words in my social media stories, and even sent messages to Abi’s account that she’ll never see. 

Maintaining Healthy Habits is Good
I will be the first to admit that in the thick of it all, I’ve slacked on my supplement routine. It just felt too overwhelming. But as the fog of grief is beginning to lift a little bit, I feel like those routines will come back soon. I know I need the nutrients to properly support my body in the process of working through all the emotions. My adrenals especially need the support so I don’t stay in flight or fight mode. I have used lots of my other “tricks” to help myself. I’ve filled the bathtub many times with epsom salts and essential oils to soothe me, taken my wellness purée, diffused oils like crazy, and coated myself in them especially to help me sleep.

Choosing to Do Something that Brings You Joy is Ok
Little things that bring me joy have been a must! They have been as small as a cup of tea or hot chocolate. Sometimes Jared has brought home a pint of our favorite ice cream to share. Other times I’ve pulled up certain songs and listened to them on a loop. Some days I’ve spent the entire day working on paper quilling projects. Whatever that is for you, don’t discount it or feel guilty for choosing a small bit of joy in the time of grief.

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