Today is a new beginning. I feel much better after expressing my true feelings. I believe that it was a very important step in the process of moving forward. Christina and the boys returned yesterday after a week at the beach. I think that their absence gave me the opportunity to reflect upon what it is that I am missing in my life as well as what it is I already have in which I should be extremely grateful. It is only today that I realize that over the past 8 or 9 months I have been going through the 5 stages of grief. I believe that at some point upon my families return I finally entered into acceptance.

As I look back at the past 8 months I realize that I have been cycling through the first 4 stages of grief: denial, anger, depression, and bargaining. At first, I thought that I just went through them out of order but as I really started to dig down into it I realized that I could never quite get to acceptance and would start back at the beginning. You may think it strange that I would enter into these stages of grief over a move from one place to another but to me it symbolized the death of my way of life.

Denial

Even leading up to our move I was in extreme denial. I told myself that my life would be better once we moved. I told myself, and everyone else for that matter, that I hated Florida. I said that I couldn’t live there another minute. I focused on every frustrating aspect of life in Florida. This may be a different way of seeing denial as I was not in denial about moving, I was in denial of the effect the move would have on me. I was in denial that this place that I had called home had embedded itself anywhere inside of my heart and that I might possibly need that in my life.

Anger

This along with depression have been where I have sat for a majority of the 8 months. It would works itself in with denial often as I would get angry at anyone who still lived in Florida, anyone who was visiting Florida, anyone who talked about Florida, etc. I had anger issues that would flare up at any time. Once I would get angry for no reason this would lead to the next stage quite easily.

Depression

Man have I been depressed. Sometimes it is hard to even get out of bed in the morning. I have a certain amount of drive that has carried me through but not to the best me. Only to the me that can function at an elementary level. Oddly enough anger would sometimes give me the jumpstart that I needed during the depression. That is why I mentioned that the two most often coexisted. I would get angry and because of this become depressed. I would then become angry that I was depressed and at those that I thought were causing it. It was a vicious cycle.

Bargaining

I would often enter bargaining, I would tell myself that there were ways to avoid this. I could have made better decisions that would not have led to this drastic move. I should have had the foresight to realize that this would be the reality if we moved back to Ohio. Usually, this is where I would go right back into denial. I would tell myself that there were very good reasons for moving away from Florida and back I would go in the let’s trash everything about Florida stage. I could not quite get to the last stage.

Acceptance

I believe that the post that I shared yesterday allowed me to finally see the light. I think that getting all of this off of my chest and finally truly being honest with myself and everyone else allowed it to be ok. It allowed me to stop going into denial. It allowed me to understand that while I can still be a bit angry about my circumstances I have no right to be angry at others. I have finally accepted that this is reality and now we need to look to the future and do what we see necessary to either move on and truly embrace our new life in Ohio or we do what is necessary to make our way back to Florida. Either way, I have accepted the death of that chapter of my life.

In some way, I believe that I went through each stage in a short amount of time yesterday. Maybe that is what led me to acceptance. Maybe it is only possible to see the other stages once you reach acceptance. Maybe that is when our minds are not completely clouded. I want to thank everyone who has been patient with me along the way. I want to apologize to any that I have hurt along the way. I’m hoping to now rebuild my life and to rebuild the relationships that I put on hold due to the struggles within myself.

Those who may have been distancing themselves due to my unpredictable behavior or crappy attitude I invite you to reach back out to me. I am going to need each and every one of you to truly regain the person that I was and to continue working on being that better person. I will be reaching out myself but don’t wait for me.

 

1 COMMENT

  1. I read both articles, but I am only commenting on this article’s thread. It seems like you have made progress in dealing with your grief. I want to reinforce your point that the decisions that you and your wife make for your family are yours, and yours alone, to make. Everyone has opinions, let’s face it. I have run into the same problems (for different reasons) with people criticizing us for going on trips, getting our kids Christmas presents, and other things. I really took them to heart, and it caused a lot of stress between me and my wife, because it really was unfair to both of us that I was letting so many people on the outside affect us on the inside. My older sister had a totally unrelated conversation with me, and said that she has realized how short life is and that we don’t have much time to spend with the ones we love, especially our children. After that conversation, I realized that we can do what we are able to enjoy that time we have. Our oldest will be 20 in less than two months, and our youngest will be 7 two months from today. We have opted to live our best lives and to give our kids the best we can while we can. Obviously, we are trying to be financially responsible, or at least, I keep telling myself that. But at any rate, you don’t need to justify the decisions or choices you and your wife make to anyone. I don’t know your whole situation, of course, but that is my take on it. There is so much more I could say, but I will just say, Godspeed, and good luck with whatever paths you choose!

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