The Beacon: 2023 09/24

My world fell apart when I got the terrible news about Texa's passing. A tsunami of emotions hit me, and amidst all the grief, something unexpected happened - I was visited by crippling anxiety. It wasn't the sound of the doorbell or seeing her final resting place that made my heart race. Instead, fear quietly crept up on me, squeezing my neck like a vise.

For fifteen long months, I've been in a battle against this fear, which felt like it could tear me apart. To fight it, I turned to some simple coping strategies. I found peace in the comforting words of the Bible, took refuge in soothing worship music, and went for long walks, hoping to release the negativity inside me.

What baffled me were the unpredictable triggers - everyday things that suddenly became emotional landmines. A smell, a sight, a taste, a sound, or a place could throw me into a storm of racing heartbeats, gasping breaths, sweaty palms, and sheer dread. At that time, I didn't realize that many others were on this painful journey, too.

I try to navigate life believing in predictability and the comfort of rules. It's crucial for my sanity. Even a hint of randomness can send waves of fear through me, making a world of uncertainty almost unbearable.

My sense of security was shattered when my daughter, Texa, suddenly left us. The illusion of control I clung to was torn away without warning, leaving me exposed and vulnerable. The safe framework I viewed the world through crumbled, revealing that control was just a fleeting dream, an illusion we all chase.

This change in my perspective triggered a silent panic, a storm beneath the surface, even when I couldn't fully understand its power. Drowning in grief, I struggled to find solid ground in this new, uncertain reality. In a world where outcomes are unpredictable, safety isn't guaranteed, and dreams of a brighter future become fragile possibilities.

Adapting to this new reality became necessary - a journey filled with shifting emotions. Despite my fear of more loss, I found the strength to face each day, to interact with the outside world, and to keep loving those around me. Anxiety, an unwelcome companion, became an outward expression of my inner struggle. My body became a canvas for my mind's ongoing processing.

As I embarked on the difficult journey of integrating the profound loss of my beloved child into my evolving understanding of the world, I noticed a change. The overwhelming fear that had gripped me started diminishing like a storm subsiding.

It showcases my unbreakable resilience and reminds me that I'm adapting, growing, and learning to confront life's challenges directly.

I've realized that healing is an ongoing journey in grief and loss, with no clear roadmap or set timeline. Patience with myself is vital.

I've also discovered that sharing my journey, like I'm doing now, can bring comfort and understanding to others on the same path. It demonstrates the strength of the human spirit, finding a way to endure and even thrive amidst extreme pain and uncertainty.

So, here I am, with a heart heavy from grief and a body trembling from anxiety. Yet, I stand with an unwavering spirit that won't succumb to defeat. I keep moving forward, knowing that every day, every victory over fear, brings me closer to a place of healing and hope - where my strength and resilience shine even brighter in the darkness.

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