A dear family, with whom I am like blood, experienced something devastating yesterday. Upon first learning of the news, I gasped. I couldn't speak. I was overwhelmed with disbelief. While I won't divulge the specifics of what happened to this family, I feel compelled to write about how I'm handling this difficult news.
So far, my strategy for processing this news has been to connect with others. In analyzing my thoughts and behaviors since I found out, I realized that in times of both extreme stress/sadness and sheer joy, I crave connection with others. I immediately connected with my family. I wanted to bond with them. Our common sadness, heartbreak, and astonishment paved the way for intense fellowship. I sought to comfort them, just as much as I sought comfort myself. I talked and listened, and talked and listened some more. In between all the talking and listening, there was a lot of thinking.
To be honest, I'm still thinking. I've gently initiated a few attempts to move away from my feelings of despair. I've not yet been successful. Hell, this all just happened. I will not push myself to cope and pretend like I'm OK. I'm not, nor is this family. We need time.
For now, I choose to continue to feel the pain for as long as it takes, as I know it's the only way I can move forward.
Be open to what comes.