After the death of my father, I did things a little backward…I focused on all the positive without taking time to grieve.  I thought on some level that it didn’t have to hurt like hell, that I could make the best of every situation and just “think positive” until things got better.

Well, I was wrong.  As it turns out, grief is necessary.  And little did I know the pain would find me and break me down.  I’m still positive about day-to-day life.  I still think that positive thinking is the way to go.  But I’ve learned somewhere along this path that feeling that pain and letting it out is necessary as well.

On some level I already knew this…as I’m sure you are also aware that you have to face obstacles and work through them.  In fact, it’s been my habit to face all challenges with a brave and conquering mindset.  So what made me hide from this?

I think that perhaps the “stages of grief” that people talk about are real.  Maybe you just can’t skip over any steps, no matter how convinced you are that you can.  This was my denial phase, where I couldn’t accept the loss so I pretended it didn’t exist.  Now that he’s been gone for over two years I can no longer pretend.  Lying to myself is no longer an option.  The truth is, I’m alone. He left his wife and my brother and I. My brother and I are true rocks. We try to hold the fort for my mom. But we still need all the work two parents are meant to share, work that my mom now shoulders alone.  And it’s reasons like this that we refuse to face painful situations in our lives.

But when it boils down to it, we have no choice but to face the truth.  The pain of our life experiences can be devastating, it can tear us to the ground!  But that pain is always temporary.  We always have the ability to brush ourselves off and grow from the challenges that seemed impossible.  And in retrospect it was never as bad as we made it out to be.  Who has ever regretted standing up and facing their pain?  You can’t grow stronger or meet your potential unless you face the pain you hold inside.