What grief feels like 5 years later

photo(1)Dear Bella,

As I watched the fog blanket our tiny town this morning, you were on my mind as I cautiously drove away from home. Your sister in the backseat couldn’t quite comprehend the inability to see what lies ahead. “I can’t seeeeeee mommmmmmmy!” she whined, both frustrated and fascinated in the same breath.

5 years ago was when the fog of your passing covered me and it’s haze left me wondering if I’d ever see a way forward again. Like your sister, the not knowing and not seeing frustrated me too.

Losing you felt like losing myself, but was I truly lost? Here I was awake and breathing and walking and talking. I didn’t need to be found, did I?

I simply needed patience as I waited for the fog to lift.

My camera became the way out. The healing. A fresh pair of eyes to see differently. The lens couldn’t see forward but it helped frame and focus in on what was right in front of me.

The present matters.

The beauty. The sadness. The wonder. The haze. The hope. LIFE. All of it matters.

It showed me that right now, this moment, might suck. But if you wait it out, the moments after can still be amazing.

My frustration made room for fascination as I realized I was never lost I was simply shedding an old layer of me to become something new. I didn’t have to carve the same path as my parents, my friends, my colleagues, or my idols.

The path was mine for the choosing.

The fog forced me to see differently. It pushed me towards my new path. One where I was grateful for the little things and for new opportunity. I was nudged in the direction of my unfolding dreams. I was taught what it meant to truly be living.

I learned it is OK…

…to choose JOY. Because what is a life lived with out joy?

I learned it is OK…

…to walk hand in hand with FEAR. Because fear can be our friend.

I learned it is OK…

…to have HOPE. Because hope is the lifeline of desire.

I learned it is OK…

…to have DESIRE. Because desire creates space for joy.

And the cycle continues.

Every time I am out of alignment I come back to these lessons that you and the fog and life have taught me, my angel. Standing here 5 years later, on the anniversary of your birth and death I can finally see the fog has lifted, my Bella Rose.

And the view from here is amazing.