Wild-eyed, I stared at the reflection in the mirror. I no longer recognised myself. My eyes were haunted by the pain and suffering not only of my brother’s death but of all the other losses I’d experienced throughout my life.
My once long red hair was gone, hacked off in a fit of fury as I tried to rid myself of the wild emotions coursing throughout my very being. All that remained was a bald scalp.
My vision blurred, a result of the all the tablets and alcohol I’d thrown down my throat in an attempt to appease the pain. I didn’t want to die. I wanted to live but I didn’t know how to. I had been destroyed at the moment my brother’s car crashed head-on into a lamp post.
I felt so tired. All I wanted was peace. Yet instead of peace, I was destroying myself and destroying those around me. I knew I couldn’t continue on in this manner. Something had to change.
Later, as I lay on the bed, something came over me. I experienced a most profound moment of peace and clarity. I realised that I had a choice. I could continue self-destructing.
Or I could choose to do something different. I could choose to make my brother’s death the greatest thing that ever happened to me. Use it as a source of inspiration and motivation to transform both myself and my life.
There was no choice for me, not really. By disrespecting myself, I was disrespecting my brother. By becoming the best I could be I would be honouring his life and living enough for both of us.
I could see a world where I let go of pain and transformed it into peace and joy. I saw a world where my hidden dream of helping others could be real.
I saw how I could live a life full of passion and purpose.
That was the moment I started creating a new normal for me. Over the years, I learned that transforming grief is about making that same choice over and over again.
Now nine years later, I look back and marvel at just how far I’ve come.
Moreover, I look back and realise that I now live in that world I saw all those years ago. I have found peace and joy. I do help others. I do live a life full of passion and purpose.
What are your choices after your loss? Which one will you follow?
Tabitha Jayne 2011Tags: anger, Depression, guilt