I was told this last week, you can’t let your grief define you, and I very much agree. At one time in my life, my grief did define me. I felt like I couldn’t get out of bed, I couldn’t clean the house, I didn’t want to see people, all because of how sad I was and the toll it was taking on my body. That was a very rough time in my life. It took me several months after Tzeitel died to get to where I felt like I was human again. I just wasn’t myself. I would never want to go back to that place again.
How would I define myself today? Child of God, wife, mother, daughter, sister, aunt, friend. I love to spend time outdoors, love time spent behind my camera capturing God’s beautiful handiwork, I love making crafts, and I love a rainy afternoon cuddled on the couch watching a movie. I love being joyful because I know that I am saved by the blood of the Lamb, and that He has a plan for everything. This is how I define myself. Grief to me is like the seasons. We all have our winters, where life is hard, and we don’t feel like we can go on. But we cannot stay there forever! We have to go into the spring, where life is new again and we learn about who we are in our “new normal”. I will always miss my girl, I will always be her mama. But as the seasons change, we learn how to go about our lives in a new way. Part of that to me is to use what I have learned over the past 2 years to help others to find hope and joy again after loss. That is why I make my memory boxes, that is why I am going through training to start a support group. Not because my grief defines me, but because I have hope and joy, and I want others to have it too! My grief does not define me, Tzeitel does not define me, but being her mama, and a bereaved parent, will forever be a part of me, and who I am.