It has been a while since I’ve written and I can truly say it’s been for several reasons. I woke up this morning and thoughts ran through my mind on what I might write about today. One thought kept coming back into my mind and that is how I stay busy to avoid grief. Over the past eight years since my daughter passed away, I’ve found countless ways to stay busy. I call it the “Art of Busy-ness”. I have crafted this art so well, I now find it hard to stop and do nothing. For in doing nothing, I fear darkness from the loss of my daughter will enter into my mind. This could also be identified as the “Art of Avoidance”.
For the past nearly four years I made it my mission to go back to school and finish my Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing. I started this adventure long before my daughter’s death, but found it too difficult to consider in the early years after her passing. Eventually I decided I needed to complete this goal that had been quietly waiting for its time to return. I entered into school thinking once this goal was accomplished, I’d feel better about myself. Well that moment came and I did feel so proud of how far I had come. Completing my degree had not been easy and quite honestly had taken a good part of 10 years. That proud feeling did not last. It was replaced by a feeling that I needed to do something else. So I signed up for my Master’s Degree in Nursing. I thought – just keep going.
A few years ago I completed my Master’s Degree in Nursing and it felt so good to be done with school. But as you might predict, my mind is saying “now what”? What should you do next? Which I began to think, why am I so eager to fill my time with work? I tend to be a workaholic too. Honestly I have been that way from an early adult age. Finding ways to work my way up the corporate ladder. I do enjoy a good challenge and truly believe I have much to offer in that way. However, it has become increasingly clear to me that I am staying “busy” for a reason. I have crafted the “Art of Busy-ness”.
I read often, whether it be from blogs or other social media outlets, how people deal with their loss(es). From the many life experiences I’ve had, I understand that I chose the path that many find hard and that is to move forward and find something good out of the bad. That path has not been easy and I have never pretended it to be. If you have read this blog you know that. But I do wonder why people grieve the way they do. One day maybe I will write more about that. For me staying busy has helped me and hurt me. It helped me move forward in life. Staying busy helped me return to work when I thought I couldn’t possibly work another day. It has helped me in my faith. But it has also hurt me because I now find it difficult to think back about my life with Brittany. My heart physically hurts when I think about our life together in Michigan. The house we spent only two years in but what a grand life it was. We finally were at a point where we could enjoy ourselves after a long battle with divorce and the emotional toll it took on us.
I sit here now with tears streaming down my face as the thought of that life brings waves of pain I can’t describe. Why? One would think those great memories would bring a smile to my face. And they do sometimes, but mostly I just want to go back to that time and just bask in her smile and her laughter – she was such a joy to me. I want more time. All of that emotion wells up inside of me and I cannot let it run free in my heart – it is just too painful. All that I miss about her and all that could have been – it just breaks my heart over and over. Now I find myself wanting to get up and find something to keep me busy. The “Art of Busy-ness” takes over and I again stuff all that I loved and took for granted back into the painful place it resides in my heart again for another day.
Until next time