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  • Writer's pictureSerena Johnson

You can’t heal from what you don’t face. It’s painful, but avoiding your emotions only delays your healing. Most people don’t naturally embrace pain, and it’s sort of a way that we keep ourselves sane and “happy”. But the reality of being a well-rounded, thriving, whole individual is allowing yourself to process emotions that may be difficult as well. It’s close to impossible to fully embrace life without it. Trust me…. I know.

One of the first steps of grief is acknowledging your pain, and then facing it. There are many articles of information on grief circulating, and many of them talk about stages or processes to grief. While I don’t necessarily subscribe to all of the stages, an most important stage worth

noting is denial. In order to grasp the reality of your loss and allow yourself (psychologically & emotionally) to process your loss, you must acknowledge the pain. It sounds very morbid and insensitive, but it’s necessary. Think about if you were to injure yourself, if you do not tend to the injury, it could very well lead to infection and possible exposure to disease. This is the same way I look at grief! In many ways, it is a trauma and injury to your heart, and if you do not acknowledge your pain, you are neglecting your heart’s ability to find healing. You have to face

your pain!! It sounds crazy, right? Who wants to face pain?… NO ONE!! Do know that pain that is undealt with will grow like a cancer and cause even more destruction in you in ways you never imagined. If you are worried that exposing yourself to grief will be daunting to do alone, there is good news. You don’t have to face it alone. I didn’t!


A key component to healing, is healing in context of community/support. I cried in safe spaces with people I loved, and who

loved me and some that I didn’t quite know. I will never forget after my mother died, my aunt Pat called to offer her words of encouragement and support. She said one thing that has been so profound and instrumental in my healing process in those first few weeks. My aunt Pat told me

that if I ever was having a moment and needed to just cry, scream or vent out my grief, that I could call her and she would just be on the other end to support me and listen. Initially, this was a hard concept for me to embrace, because I usually the shoulder people would lean on… and now I had to make myself vulnerable enough to use someone else’s shoulder to cry on. I can

tell you that it was one of the best decisions that I made in my grief, and I took my aunt Pat up on that offer one day. I can’t tell you the amount of support, love and security I felt on that phone call filled with nothing but tears and deep breaths. We all need a support system so don’t go at

it alone. (I talk more about this in another blog).

I made the choice to open my heart to allow the Father to ultimately comfort and heal my fragile, broken heart. He did. And I’m forever grateful

~ Grief isn’t easy, but hope and healing are possible

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