It’s been over two years since I wrote the following blog. We carry grief like an autoimmune issue. It’s always going to be part of us and can flare up. I constantly look back at where I was to remind me of what I’ve grown through. Life has blessed me with a second chance and I’m not willing to take it for granted. If you are always focused on your loss then you miss the small gains. Pennies don’t seem very valuable by themselves, but one million pennies can certainly add up quick. I appreciate my present more than every because of my past.
Grief unlocks many gifts when you add gratitude…
July 25, 2020
I Have A Sometimes Invisible, Often Chronic, Incurable Condition – I Have Grief.
For those of you new around here, Hi I’m Bryan. I’m a director of animal care at an aquarium. I’m passionately obsessed with essential oils and environmentally safe products. I’m a son, brother, uncle, cousin and a friend. I love to dance. I love to make others smile. I want to make the world a better place every day in whatever way I can.
Some days the world is better when a kid learns that recycling can save the ocean and that plastic straws can really hurt sea turtles. Some days the world is better when a new friend uses a natural product that gives them results and they toss away chemicals that are disrupting their body chemistry. Some days the world is better with a silly dance video. Some days the world is better with a nephew video chat. Some days the world is better with a smile and holding the door for a stranger. It’s not hard to help make the world better but that doesn’t mean life doesn’t have the hidden hard moments. I find that making others smile helps keep down the inflammation.
You see, I have a chronic, incurable condition. I suffer from grief. I’m widowed. Two years ago I lost the man I thought I would spend the rest of my life with. I lost myself and I gained a whole new emotionally chronic condition. Grief is hard to explain because it affects us all differently. Sometimes it stays with just the infected individual and other times it spreads like wildfire. Grief is and isn’t contagious.
Grief can be invisible and also acutely apparent. Grief can lay dormant yet appear as full triggered emotional inflammation with a simple thought, a picture, image and even just speaking one word. I live with grief every day and there is no cure. Once you have been infected with grief, you will always be a carrier. Sometimes you can move through the symptoms and put it to rest. Sometimes new grief brings up old grief and you relive what you thought you had made peace with from your past. Loss of your person reminds you of all the failed relationships you’ve ever had. Even down to that boy in high school you just adored but couldn’t tell him because you were gay. However, someone told him and so he stopped talking to you. Lost love lasts a lifetime and grief creeps in unexpectedly.
So I move forward through the flare-ups, through the tired days, through the days with loss of appetite, through the nights of emotional eating, through the lonely days, through the memories. My grief is even triggered when I see others suffer loss. I’m reminded of those first few days after Clayton was gone. A storm of emotions and wondering if I will make it. I am reminded of that phone call. I’m reminded of the loudest sound I’ve ever heard – my heart breaking.
So I do my best to help make the world a better place because that keeps the chronic emotional inflammation down. You don’t get over grief, you can only manage the symptoms.
Hi! My name is Bryan. I care for animals. I care for people. I’m widowed and I suffer from grief.