What can you do if you can’t make yourself feel better?

A woman I love dearly is badly burned.
She was sleeping two nights ago and was woken, on fire.
The extent of her burns is not yet established, but it’s not good.
Her partner is dead.
She is one of the strongest, bravest women I know.
Tiny, gorgeous, energetic.
She is the backbone of her entire family
who wait, in her home country, for the money she sends them every week
and for her to bring  them to live in Canada.

And now she is in hospital with severe burns to her hands and arms
which may make it impossible for her to return to work.

I spent the day yesterday trying to figure out how to think about this.
Trying  to find a thought that would make it feel, if not better, neutral.
I couldn’t.
All I could feel was deep grief and sadness and loss
for her
for her family
for her dream
and for me.

And I decided,
sometimes that’s as good as it gets.
Sometimes, we just allow ourselves to feel our pain
in a clean deep way.

The discipline of thought work has taught me
not to go to the “what if” or the “I wish” or the “why her” or the “what will happen to” thoughts
because those will take me to a whole new level of panic and worry that will not help,
and that will cloud my ability to see what I can do to help.

I will stay with the immediate grief
in the present moment
every moment.
This way, my mind will be clear to focus on what I need to do
without having to battle with the endless stories of unfairness or hardship that are part of our joint human programming
and that do not benefit us at all.

I also know, that food won’t fix this.
In the past, when I received news that was very painful
I was afraid of the intense emotion
and, in order to avoid it, I would eat until I was numb.
But if I’m numb I can’t help Angie.
And, thanks to years of thought work and choosing to live consciously
I can move through my day with this pit of grief and sadness.
Acknowledge it.
Explain it to my kids why I’m a bit distracted tonight, without any blame.
Share it, without sharing any interpretation of why it happened.
And I know that it will be there
until it isn’t.

And either way, I will be available, being the person I want to be in this situation –
accepting in an unacceptable situation.

 

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About Forever Free with Bev Aron, Certified Weight Loss Coach

I work with emotional eaters who desperately want relief from emotional eating, but can't seem to do it on their own. They know they need to eat less and move more, but can't figure out why they aren't doing it. My specialty is showing them the why and the how. I also work with parents who are worried about their children's weight. I help those parents encourage their children to have a healthy body image and a healthy relationship with food.
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