Life

thoughts on wallowing and sorrow.

(photo i took of a quote in Desire To Inspire)

i have had kind of re-awakening of sorts in just the past month. i have felt a stirring within me. it’s my spirit fighting. fighting against things that aren’t bringing me or my family {life}. i have felt myself beginning to really feel alive in areas i haven’t in what feels like such a long time.

i have been seeing an amazing grief counselor since the beginning of the year. and this year i was diagnosed depressed which wasn’t really a huge shock to myself or anyone close. my post partum depression (after Eisley) turned into full blown depression after i had Shailo.

the interesting thing is this; from that very moment that a professional diagnosed me depressed something clicked in me and i guess you could say i “checked out”. it was like just hearing that, i allowed myself to really sink further into my depression. to wallow in it. in the past (almost) 2 years, i have seen an interesting pattern with myself.

i have struggled with anxiety and depression and i have seen that yes, an individual can obviously be depressed and feel depressed however there is a huge difference between feeling sorrowful and wallowing. please know and hear my heart, that this is something i have observed in myself. this may not resonate in others and that is really okay. this could also just be a personality thing too. maybe i am just not made to wallow. actually, i know i am not. i’m not sure any of us are. i know that we need to {feel} and i 100% know that the Lord wants us to grieve, to feel our sorrows and our pains.

but i also recognize within myself, that i can’t function in wallowing and in loving others. this summer has been an incredible struggle. i remember thinking that i literally felt like i couldn’t be there for anyone besides myself, my kids and my husband… and even in that i felt like i failed on a daily/hourly basis. i closed doors, i even threw walls up with most people and really started putting people at arms length. no one could understand my pain and i didn’t want to hear of anyone else’s pain because it felt like “too much” to carry. i understand that there is a time and a season in everything and that this can definitely resonate in someone – the idea of having too much to carry and feeling unable to carry anything else. that happens. it does.

but for me, once that mindset started to settle in me, it was like my whole world grew darker. my depression felt worse. i thought stepping back from putting myself forward and being there for others, would really help me to heal and maybe process my own burdens and grief but it actually made it feel so much worse.

i was wallowing and it was eating me up. it was robbing life from my family. it was stealing a bit of who i am and what i feel He’s spoken to me/called me to. wallowing has robbed my life.

one evening, i sat on the couch with Ted, emotions raw.

what had happened to us? what had happened to our core values and what we had once held onto so tightly? what had happened to our passion and ambition for a deep, meaningful, purposeful life? what had happened to our goals and our dreams? what had happened to wanting to be there for others in their struggles?

when we lost Eisley, we felt like we had lost a part of us, like literally a part of us had died.  for me personally, some dreams i have always had, felt as though they died when she did. even dreams that i had for my family – as a whole. some that i am learning to truly let go and some that i am learning to pick back up again. some hopes/values/dreams that i know i must cling to even amidst this sorrow and ache.

i know that i will always feel this ache within me, this sorrow at the loss of our daughter. i know that but it is what will i do with the deep sorrow that will make the difference. it really comes down to how i choose to react as i feel my sorrow. my sorrow will always rest on me and i have already seen that while my sorrow is always present with each new season, it sometimes feels stronger than others – with memouries, reminders, milestones  and anniversaries… and other times it will feel like a soft whisper in my spirit, an ever present, bittersweet ache as we life our everyday life.

i’m still sorting through these sort of thoughts, and while i feel in the thick of it, even almost 2 years later, i know that i know that i know, this isn’t me. i can feel sorrow but to wallow isn’t for me. i guess i am making this kind of my public declaration, that i want to see this change within me. i want to declare that though my heart aches, i will take that ache and make the most of life.  i feel that He created us to not have to carry these burdens alone. i want to be there for others in their journeys of pain and sorrow, of joy and excitement…

Sunday we did kind of huge thing (for us, in many ways) and started and finished what is called The Warrior Dash. dear friends of ours asked us to join them (months ago) and while we thought they were crazy (love you, Britt! haha) because she had just had a baby and also because we were all out of shape , we did it. finally feeling some sort of victory in something is so uplifting. so encouraging.

the first week of June, i began to jog oh. so. slowly (and am still pretty slow, haha.) i haven’t lost but 2 pounds – which, yes, at times that totally blows when i think about it. but i have gained endurance, and courage, and for the first time in a while, i feel HOPE. hope in many things. jogging/running is very therapeutic for me. i have been doing couch to 5k and am now currently just running to my music. and every.single.time. i turn on Florence and The Machine’s ‘Shake It Out’, on repeat. here are a few lines from this incredibly powerful song;

Shake it out, shake it out, shake it out, shake it out, ooh woaaah

Shake it out, shake it out, shake it out, shake it out, ooh woaaaah

And it’s hard to dance with a devil on your back, So shake him off, oh woah

I am done with my graceless heart

So tonight I’m gonna cut it out and then restart

Cause I like to keep my issues drawn, It’s always darkest before the dawn…

(you can read the rest of the lyrics here)

it’s been incredible and somewhat of a spiritual and emotional thing for me, running. it’s kind of my way of fighting back when my body and emotions feel out of control, like they’re consuming every ounce of life from me. i’ve signed up for another run at the end of september, and this one, for such {huge} reasons and inspiration. i hope to have time to share much more soon.

in a way, i feel like this post could come as a shock to some because in person, i’m pretty good at holding this all together and even social media-wise, i’ve toned everything down a few notches from being totally emo ;) this is really something that i have kept to myself, to a few close friends and to family because i’ve come to realize – even on social media – not everyone wants to hear this sort of thing. i sometimes feel like i share the cheery parts of life a lot more than the really, real ones and i don’t regret sharing the good parts – because they truly are good, and wonderful memouries. but here, in the safety of my blog and knowing that those reading probably truly do want to hear, i share. if that makes any sense ;)

thanks for listening. i hope this somehow spoke to someone’s heart/mind today. i truly believe He really wants us to feel this beautiful, painful sorrow and i hope that you know that with your whole heart, even if right now that might feel impossible or overwhelming, let yourself feel it. and while you are feeling this sorrow, carrying this with you in everyday life  – don’t let it turn into wallowing and rob you of the very life He created us to have, don’t let it steal away from what your sorrowful heart needs to feel.

much love,

J

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2 thoughts on “thoughts on wallowing and sorrow.

  1. I want to reach through this computer and hug you. Thank you for your honesty. I am so inspired by your beautiful spirit, always. One day when I was running, not long after I’d started, that same song came on Pandora and it fueled me so much. I was hurting but it made me keep going, even faster. I had tears in my eyes and was smiling at the same time. It’s on my playlist every run now. I love that you run to it, too. xo

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