19 x 2 = 38
“Learn the art of acceptance. It’s a lot of grief.”
Excerpt From: Beattie, Melody. “Codependent No More: How to Stop Controlling Others and Start Caring for Yourself.”
The above quote felt like a punch disguised as caress when I read it this past week. Why? Because acceptance means that you understand that you cannot change anything about …
I would have loved to be married and have had children (biologically) already. At the age of 44 and with my history with the ObGyn (poking, prodding, biopsies) the chances of my getting pregnant still … yeah. I have had to accept that carrying my own child is exceptionally slim. Accepting it involves a process of grief. Saying goodbye to something that I hoped for and dreamt about, albeit later than others. Still.
A long term relationship and getting married in my mid/late 30’s to someone I could experience life with and grow with, travel with, share love and life with. Yes, I can still meet someone and get married. However, every year that goes by that it doesn’t happen, I grieve.
Falling in love someone who does not reciprocate the feeling. Grief and acceptance.
Every year that goes by that an old friend opts to not talk to me, not allowing me the opportunity to have the conversation we need to have to apologise and decide if this is a friendship worth saving or close the chapter … grieve and accept.
Every job I apply for, every interview I attend, every unsuccessful … grieve and accept.
He / She / They don’t want me here anymore. I have to leave (even though I don’t want to).
The above are a few examples from my life … there are many more. I’m sure you have your own?
I have fought and cried in my head, in my heart, in prayer, out loud, inaudibly, in my room, in my car, in nature, at the beach, in the rain, in the sunshine … I have learnt that grieving is part of the process of acceptance. I cannot fully accept something unless I’ve grieved the parts that didn’t work out the way I hoped for or expected. The grieving might happen in a split second or it can take a while.
Acceptance is an art. Full acceptance. The sooner it happens, the sooner life moves forward for me. It’s a relief. Actually, it’s delightful … carrying the lie of acceptance when I have not grieved can become quite heavy. Many times we do this because we’ve been taught that there are some things that we must just accept and that it’s too insignificant to grieve … Hmmm … who makes those decisions?
I used to joke around a lot about the above to cover the hurt, the tears, the heartbreak because I didn’t feel allowed to speak about my feelings. I knew I felt them. I just didn’t feel like they would be accepted and acknowledged as real feelings. Going through papsmeers alone … biopsy things alone … waiting for results alone … suppressing how I really felt for the sake of those around me. The fear, the sadness, what certain results would mean …
We are allowed to grieve the little things. We are allowed to say how we feel. Your feelings are valid and real. Your story is important. You are not alone. Grieve. Accept.
Life is to be lived. Love is to be felt. Laughter is to be heard.
Life has many moments / times of grief.
It’s not only the big things.
The little things also needs to be grieved.
Allow yourself the space to breathe.
And then accept.
Open your arms and heart for the new experience.
With lightness and delight.
Acceptance is an art. With practice it happens quicker. More peaceful.
It’s like a social partner dance with someone you don’t know. You watch the difference dancers on the floor and want to dance with someone you don’t know. You decide on one or a few people you’d like to dance with because they look great on the dance floor. Then you dance and sometimes you might find out that your rhythms are not aligned slightly or at all … what to do? You grieve your decision / the discrepancy in the split second you’ve got and just continue to dance and make it the best dance experience possible – be intentional to enjoy it. Lesson learnt. Experience gained. Better decision-making next time.
Never miss the chance to dance.
As with the art of dancing, grief and the art of acceptance become better with practice. And like any practising, it’s hard and it is continuous. But it’s so worth it.
You deserve it.