Tuesday, January 25, 2011

weeding my garden

i'm still here. the last couple of days have been so hectic. in between grieving, working on my new projects, and dealing with my car getting a flat tire i haven't had a spare moment to post like i want to. arrgh! i'm still dealing with the drastic ebb and flow of grief. i had an appt with my counselor on sun, and i think i cried more that day (more than 3 months out) then i have ever cried with her. so many feelings, and emotions can hit you without any warning, and that is exactly what happened on sun. but i continue to take it 1 step/breath/moment at a time.

a dear friend of mine posted a quote on her facebook page that got me thinking. it was: "friendship isn't about who you've known the longest ... it's about who came and never left your side." for some reason that quote kind of left me momentarily speechless. i have been doing so much thinking about this very topic since Juju passed away. a few months ago i even posted about the fact that i had begun the hard process of analyzing the relationships in my life.

my sweet friend, angie, shared this article with me after my original post. the article, entitled "weeding your garden" is a personal account by the author, which compares this process of scrutinizing the relationships in our lives after the death of our children to, well, weeding a garden. it is a fantastic article, and pretty much summed up everything that i had been feeling or going through. but i found the following paragraph particularly true:
It was the death of my child that was different. I had changed overnight but they had not. I was not that same person any longer and they wanted the “old” me back. They wanted everything to go back to “normal”. But this was the new me and my life had taken a different path and this was a journey they did not want to take with me. My grief had suddenly shifted from grief for my son to anger towards them and I was going down a very dangerous road. I had veered off my path of grief and was headed down the winding road of hate and rage. My world was spinning out of control and I needed to reclaim it. I realized that my focus needed to be on my son if I was going to move through this grief process in a healthy way. It would have been very easy to shut out everyone. But what I needed to do was to remove any outside forces that were preventing me from my journey.
i have learned that real friendship *isn't* at all about the people i have known the longest, or even the people i have met in person. it's about the people that stand by you at your very worst moments. it's about those that are there while you are red-faced from crying, sitting on the floor, with snot running down your face, and don't turn away. it's about those people that drive over to your house to cut your hair because you feel as though it's suffocating you and keeping you from grieving. it's about those that rise above their fears of losing a child themselves, or potentially upsetting you, or {insert numerous other reasons people give for staying away}, and reach out anyway. it's about those that acknowledge your child, and the impact that they had {and continue to have} in your life even though they are not physically on this earth with us. that is what real, true friendship is about. yes, i have been disappointed in some people. yes, i have felt abandoned by some that i considered close friends. but, luckily, for every 1 person that has abandoned or disappointed me, it feels like 2 more have taken up their post. i may have lost some friends through this, but i have not felt as though my "love bubble" has gotten smaller - in fact, i think it's grown.

i never thought that i would be doing so much re-arranging of my life. i never thought grief would have such an impact on every.single.aspect of my life {seriously, there is even certain foods that i cannot eat anymore, and places i still can not go because they so painfully remind me of that horrid day}. this is the collateral damage of grief. unfortunately, i'm on this different path. and because i'm here, i *have* to make the painful choice to let go of friendships/relationships that i have held onto for various reasons. i need to, as the author of the article so eloquently put it, remove any outside forces that prevent me from my journey through grief. but i wish i didn't even have to make these decisions at all...

7 comments:

Debo said...

Tiffany...As you have written your message today about "weeding out your garden" this is something that has to be done for you. Don't rethink should I or not weed out this particular person, it has to be done. I learned a very long time ago, people are like seasons....as season come and go...so do people in our lives. I myself can only be surrounded by positive people...no negative people....makes me sad and sometimes agry...sorry, got sidetracked with myself..as people/friends do come and they go from our lives for whatever reason they became your friends, that you were holding on to (will never be forgotten)...but it's true that the season has ended. Your are always in my thoughts and prayers...I sometime get mad at myself, if I get busy and don't send you a love heart......I think your a a very strong young lady that I just admire and have grown more foundly of, just because....Always know, that I'm here for you and that I love you.....

Megan said...

I agree!!! We all must "weed our garden." ESPECIALLY in times like these. You really find out who are "really" friends!

Rhiannon said...

This post resonates so deeply for me. I am in need of weeding my garden, too. I have been hurt by people who I used to consider my best friends when they ran for the hills as soon as Harper passed away. I got let down by people I expected the most from and surprised by people who I never expected support from. I am glad that you feel your love bubble has grown and I hope that I am a part of that bubble :) You are certainly part of mine. Sending love and hugs to you. <3

Jamia said...

Always here for you...

MrsH said...

I found that my friends group has stayed pretty much the same, small and steady, I don't have many friends but the ones I have are quite mature and have dealt with loss themselves before. What I did shed were the superficial relationships, for which I suddenly don't have patience anymore, esp. with people who feel immature and childish to me. And it is a good change!

rebecca said...

Beautifully written post...it is amazing those that surprise you by stepping up and those that you expected more of that don't. I'm glad you're doing whats best for you and continuing to feel the love of many surrounding you!

Natasha said...

This is such a great post! I was just thinking about this the other day. I have been doing some "weeding" myself since the loss of my beautiful Aiden. It is so amazing and surprising how those you expect more from are not there for you and people you never would have imagined it from have touched your heart and shared in your grief.

God has a funny way of showing us things. I believe that I am forever changed- for being Aiden's mom, for sharing a body with him for 9 months, and for losing him 3 weeks before he was to be born. Because I'm changed I can't deal with people who don't share the vision I have for myself as Aiden's mom. I don't expect anyone to change- I just have to be the best person I can be so when Aiden looks down at me from heaven. I think the weeding out process has been important to me in processing the new person I am.....


Hugs to you mama! xx

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