Part two in the writing through grief series we are going to be writing about what we are thankful for. I want to point out, this may be tough. When I was going through all my trauma, plenty of people liked to point out things I should be grateful for and though I knew very well what those things were and that I was indeed grateful for them, I felt like they were downplaying my trauma. You can be thankful and grieve at the same time, when you are in the midst of a hard moment, it's okay not to sit and think of things to be grateful for. Some people find it helpful but some people aren't able to comprehend in the moment and that is okay. You will get there when you are ready.
When you tackle gratitude for yourself, it allows you to see things more clearly. Sure, you may have some guilt that you don't feel grateful or thankful but sometimes even just acknowledging some things you feel lucky to have is all you need to do. You may not feel the emotion right now and that's okay. Remember, all the emotions and feelings right now during this traumatic event are normal and healthy. It's okay if while writing this you still feel anxious and panicked, it's okay that you don't feel thankful or grateful. I still encourage you to write some positives down in your life. If anything, to change your thoughts for a few minutes and if you can't do it today, come back tomorrow and try.
Things I'm thankful for:
Really, I could go on and on about all the things I am blessed to have, feel grateful and thankful to have in my life. We don't always recognize how blessed we are, we take small things for granted and I think this event is one in which perhaps people will start to appreciate the smaller things in life. I learned this lesson many moons ago but I'll tell you, it wasn't easy to change my mindset. Purposefully looking for the good in your life can be a struggle for some. It took me years of mindful practice to get into a routine of listing 3 things a day i am grateful for and one thing I love about myself. I started this with Bee months ago and now we can't go to bed until our grateful list is done! Its amazing what you may start to notice when you take the time to reflect on your day.
When you first start, listing things as simple as life, roof over your head and food on your table are perfectly fine. You can always revert to simpler gratitude's when having a hard day as well (sometimes on those days though, digging deeper is much more satisfying) but once you get into the practice, you will start to see the smaller things in life you appreciate. Some people focus on being thankful in the morning, some in the evening, some both times of the day. Pick a time that works for you, we like to do it as part of our bedtime routine. We reflect on the day and what we enjoyed as well as pinpoint any events that will need to be further addressed (if something was upsetting etc, we write it down to deal with the next day so it clears our mind and allows us to sleep better).
Just remember, when in a hard emotional moments, it's okay to take a break and not look for the good things while you grieve. You have to do what is best for you, You are allowed to feel every emotional you feel and go through the ups and downs of emotions and don't let anyone tell you that you need to be grateful for this and that when you have also experienced something tragic. You take the time to live through and survive the trauma then you can get back on the grateful track.
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