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Heartbreak to Healing: A Transformative Journey

Heartbreak to Healing: A Transformative Journey

I sat in the bath staring at my legs resting on the edge of the tub.

As I examined my feet, I noticed a small drop of water sliding down the side of my left big toe and I burst into tears.

Even my toe is crying, I thought to myself as I released the pent-up feelings I’d been carrying for days while handling another family crisis. It’s always surprising to me how random things can ignite grief – seeing a shade of blue that matches your loved one’s eyes, a commercial for their favorite television series, or catching a glimpse of a license plate that contains their initials. Everywhere you turn there’s a reminder that life as you’ve known it will never return.

The grief process can be disorienting at best. Accepting the loss is like being forced to attend a dinner party hosted by a guest who serves confusion and anger as a first course, melancholy and heartbreak as the main meal, and despair for dessert. You want to escape, run from the table, rail against the reality that your loved one is gone, but you can’t move from your seat. Like it or not, you must eventually metabolize the meal.

Fortunately, experience is a saving grace. When Michael and I learned that our friend Ileen had died, we turned to each other and said, “We’ve done this before and we’ll do it again. We’ll get through this together.” If you’ve lived long enough you learn that loss becomes a frequent visitor and this familiarity alone helps soften the blow.

And so, the healing begins. Friends bring food and help with errands. Tissues are tucked in pockets. Stories are shared to evoke memories that keep our loved ones alive. And we learn to sit with heartbreak so the pain can rise and release. It’s a part of life that still makes no sense at all and yet, I tell myself throughout the day, It’s okay, sweetheart. We can handle this.

Love,

Cheryl

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Cheryl Richardson
For the last twenty-five years I’ve dedicated my life to the practice of self-care because it’s good for people and it’s good for the planet. From personal experience, as well as coaching a diverse group of clients, I’ve come to understand that when we care deeply for ourselves, we naturally begin to care for others – our families, our friends, the environment, and the whole world – in a healthier and more effective way.

Please email: . © Copyright 2023. Cheryl Richardson, P.O. Box 13, Newburyport, MA 01950. 

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