There is no finish line

Jan 24, 2024

Grief is neither a sprint nor a marathon. It’s not even an ultra-marathon. Because there is no finish line. There is a more accurate analogy.

Grief is more like going to the gym to lift weights. At no point are you finished lifting weights. No, you just keep showing up, and lifting the weights, and with each repetition, you get a bit stronger.

The early days of grief are a bit like showing up to the gym and someone says, here’s a 100lb weight. You’ll be carrying this from now on.

There’s no instruction, and you have no idea how to carry this weight. And you’re at your weakest, skin and bones frail. So, you attempt to carry the weight in the most ergonomically incorrect way, simply because you’ve never had to carry something so heavy before.

Which makes it exponentially heavier.

So, you get a trainer who helps you learn the ergonomics and helps you get stronger with time.

And eventually that weight that was once unbearable starts to be more bearable. And you keep showing up and picking up the weights and doing the reps.

And there comes a day that the weight feels more like a heavy backpack. Is it heavy? Yes. Can you carry it? Also, yes. Some days you hardly know it’s there. Other days, you are fully aware of its presence.

The weight of grief can be so debilitating that it can be tempting to opt out of life, to merely exist, to bide time and even wish it away. I was in that place. I get it.

Another option is to show up, pick up the weights and do the reps.

Do the work of grief.

  • Face it head on rather than trying to avoid it.
  • Feel the feelings that demand to be felt.
  • Examine the default thoughts your brain offers you.
  • Think true, useful and kind thoughts, on purpose.

Is it comfortable? No. Does it change your situation? No.

But it changes you.

That is my wish for you. That you’ll choose to live fully, even if you don’t know what that looks like right now. That you’ll commit yourself to figuring it out.

That you’ll show up and do the heavy lifting of grief today rather than postponing it.

Because you have a pulse, and therefore you have a purpose.

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