Looking forwards is positive.
Looking forwards gives me the opportunity to create a brand-new future, to have complete control over what I do and to take things in a different direction.
Looking forwards is negative.
Looking forwards brings about a sense of anxiety and stress, how do I cope with everything that needs doing without Claire?
Looking backwards is positive.
Looking backwards gives me the opportunity to be thankful for the 28 years that Claire and I spent together, being married for 22 of them. Such happy memories.
Looking backwards is negative.
Looking backwards brings a sense of longing and reminds me of everything that I’ve lost.
And all that leads to a rather bouncy state of mind, bouncing backwards and forwards from positive to negative. The bouncing can happen quite quickly from the tiniest of triggers which can never be predetermined. The other day I was watching a TV programme, I can’t remember what it was but I can remember I was enjoying it. I felt positive. And then all of a sudden I realised that I could never enjoy a TV programme again and share that enjoyment with Claire. I felt negative.
I’m excited about moving house and looking forwards to a new life by the sea, I feel positive. Which reminds me of the life I’m leaving behind and everything that Claire knew, I feel negative.
This bouncing of emotions seems to be common amongst the grieving from what I can tell, which makes keeping up our relationships with friends and family pretty difficult at times. One minute I want to see people and the next minute I want to be alone – almost as capricious as the British weather, and certainly as unpredictable!
So if you know anyone that has recently lost someone close to them, bear with them. If they want to see you one-minute and don’t the next then it’s just them coming to terms with the loss.
I know that what I need to do is to make those positive views as bright and close and vivid as possible, all the while turning down those negative views to make them as dim, faraway and still as possible. If I change how I see those views of forwards and backwards and decide to make them bright or dim then I control how much of an impact they have. So whilst I can’t control the events themselves I can control their impact, and therein lies my little revelation for today…