Grief and gratitude while we hang on and hang in.
Whoa, hang on. Holiday season is here. And the pandemic rages on with a vengeance.
Everything we typically anchor ourselves to is fragile, upended, and uncertain. The human condition has been rocked off its moorings and we are cast adrift. We are not all in the same boat, but we are all in the same storm.
The song, Anchors Aweigh, keeps humming through my mind and through my day.
Hmmm. I wondered why? I googled the lyrics and discovered that when sailors say, “Anchors aweigh!”, they’re reporting to the ship’s bridge that the anchors are clear of the sea bottom and the ship is officially under way.
Last week, the country paused a bit for Veterans Day. A day of remembrance and respect. An opportunity to give thanks to the many who did so much and still do. Thank You.
It’s also a day that brings emotions to the forefront. The twin battles of grief and loss. Mixed with gratitude. How do we navigate these seas? What do we hold on to?
Find an anchor
In the days to come as we prepare for Thanksgiving, we have another opportunity to feel the mixture of grief, loss, and gratitude.
Where are the anchors? How much of a serving of each emotion can we welcome or tolerate?
What hurts? Maybe it feels like everything hurts.
Find an anchor…call a friend, bake muffins, dance in the kitchen, hum the song Anchors Aweigh.
What is still the same? Maybe it feels like nothing is the same.
Find an anchor. Hold on. Hang tight.
Look around your environment and notice, really see what’s still there. Notice the sky, still there. Notice Christmas lights going up in the neighborhood. Just like always. Notice breath; your breath and the breath of loved ones. Still there – in and out. A rhythm, an anchor.
Opposites attract. Grief and gratitude. Darkness and light. Hope and disappointment.
Find your personal anchors. They are everywhere, usually in plain sight when we pause to remember.
Pause. Just like Veterans Day. Just like Thanksgiving Day. Pause.
Not just a “Day” but a “way” of remembering the grief, loss, and gratitude. These are some of the emotions that our lives serve up. Take it all in. Find your moorings.
May your holidays be happy, healthy, and underway.
Love all around, above, below, to the left and to the right, before you and behind you,
PS – You might also find helpful tips on how to stay grounded here: What is yours to do?
Anchors Aweigh definition: The word weigh originates from an old word meaning heave, hoist, or raise. Aweigh means something, in this case an anchor, has been raised.
Guest blogger, JoLene Weir, is an author and former nurse. After writing many articles, JoLene is now writing her first novel. She lives in Portland, OR.
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