Monday, April 25, 2011

Happiness Never Forgets You

Even if happiness forgets you a little bit, 
never completely forget about it. 

Jacques Prévert 

A new blogging friend's post made me think about those times of grief, depression, anxiety and restlessness from way too many deaths of family and friends in a short period of time.  They were awful times when happiness was a distant memory, but something that was craved and prayed for. Life happens . . . we will all have to deal with grief at times in our lives. 

The focus of today's post is grief and the happiness and peace of mind it takes, sapping the energy out like the blood has been drained out of your body.  We all deal with it differently, but it sure can knock the wind out of even the strongest person.

This year will mark the ninth year of suddenly becoming a widow and I can say that I have finally moved on with my life and have found the happiness I was searching for.  I've learned how to be grateful for the beautiful life we shared, but it is not always easy.  Even now, so many years later, I experience those sad days when I miss the awesome friendship we shared.  

The usual trigger days are rough, like birthdays, anniversaries and holidays . . . the sadness of the loss creeps in, but as time goes on, happiness of my present life has shortened the sad time.  However, time does not heal, it merely allows us to cope more effectively.  At least that has been my experience.

The depression and anxiety that grief triggers is unlike anything else and so difficult to explain.  Unless you have gone through it, there is no way to understand the hell that the survivor feels trapped in.  Back in the day, I lost many friends who didn't care enough to understand what I was going through.  It felt as though I was a echo in a canyon . . . absolutely lost, not knowing where to turn . . . with a handful of friends and family who really understood.  

Depression itself holds a certain societal stigma, with outsiders thinking that the person going through it should "just get over it" . . . making the depressed person feel like even less of a person, like a freak of nature, not worthy of happiness and peace of mind.  It is a vicious cycle.  If you are one of those people . . . do the depressed person a favor . . . just don't say anything if you can't be a truly supportive, positive influence on them.  My grandmother had a saying about these type of people . . . they will kick a dead dog when he's down.

Based on my experience, there are a few things I'd like to add . . . get professional help if you are willing to accept the help.  It may sound crude, but rid yourself of those negative people who lack compassion for your situation in life . . . they will only make you feel like a freak . . . and you are not a freak, you are simply a human being going through a rough time in your life, having a difficult time coping.  

Love yourself . . . is so important to know that you are worthy of happiness again . . . give yourself permission to understand what is going on deep inside and analyze how to get yourself out of it.  Figure out what it is that will make you truly happy.  Journaling and writing about it helped me tremendously . . . I learned the questions to ask myself from my therapist, who essentially saved my life.

Having gone through all the stages and phases of grief, depression, anxiety, restlessness, anger and a judgmental society, I can honestly say that you can get through it and find happiness again.  It is attainable . . . really it is.  

Happiness may elude you for a season of time . . . but never lose hope that it will never return, it does.

This post is being linked up to Monday Madness, a blog hop dedicated
to Mental Health Awareness, which is so lacking in our society.



NANCY said...

I love your blog. It's so inspiring! Thank you so much for stopping by my blog and saying such conforting words. It really meant a lot to me.


Gina Alfani said...

Thank you so much for the compliment Nancy! I'm so happy that you like my blog :) It is always my pleasure to comfort anyone going through something in life no matter what it is . . .

shah wharton said...

Wonderful and insightful post. I doubt I'd live through losing my husband - I'm so dependent on him for my peace of mind and for a safe heart. I lost my bother and my dad (and several grandparents) and I still struggle with their loss. You're right though - Time does allow us to handle it better. And I really did get rid of a LOT of so called friends around that time too.

Thanks for linking this up to Monday Madness too. Shah .X

Gina Alfani said...

Thanks for visiting and commenting Shah!

What doesn't kill us makes us stronger . . .


I've been told to just get over it with my bipolar depression and been told, "I've been down, but I got over it." My type of depression is organic, something that will never go away and will always have to be medicated.

Does the depression you felt, does it just lessen but stay with you? Or does it just haunt you on those special days now?

Very interesting post. Funny how those who have never been there say the worst things they can thinking they are helping.

Followed you from Monday Madness

Gina Alfani said...

Hi Heather! The depression comes in phases. Sometimes I think it is always there and will never go away, but the difference is that I have better control over it and can cope with it more effectively. It doesn't take as long to pick myself back up when I start to feel those haunting feelings.

Thank you so much for visiting, commenting and following my blog . . . it does help to hear from others whose life has been tormented by depression.

Have a beautiful day . . . Gina

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