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Am I Allowed to Move Forward?

Grief is very sticky.


This week has been especially challenging for me emotionally. The shootings in Texas and NY (and a growing list) are a culmination of deeply disturbing events that have continued to increase in frequency and magnitude over my lifetime.


I have found it hard to engage in my business fully this week. I have been on edge with my family. I am stuck in a place of sorrow because it feels wrong to move forward.


We have all experienced the stickiness of grief at some point. We don’t feel right leaving behind traumatic emotions. These sticky emotions can be caused by abuse, divorce, death, illness, war, poverty, etc.


We believe that we will be judged if we move forward too soon. We feel guilt and shame for forgetting the past.


This is completely normal. And there is no script for when we move on. Nora McInerny is well known for her Ted Talk about losing her husband to brain cancer. She speaks and writes about how she moves forward with her grief.


She offers that we can live in tandem with all of our emotions and that we don’t need approval or a green light to remove the veil of grief.


I agree. We are capable of holding space for conflicting emotions. We can have moments of reflection followed by intense joy.


We can cry into our pillows and also want intimacy from our partners. We can imagine the pain of parents who have lost children and children who have lost parents and still give intense love to our families.


Grief can disappear for weeks and return with a vengeance.


You can bring the grief with you in whatever way serves you.


Grief changes you forever. You can decide exactly what that means for you.


No one else has to impact that decision.


In both love and sadness,


E



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