Coping with Loss,  Grief

Setting Boundaries

One of the gifts in grief, is the way you view the world. The new perspective you have on life and the self-awareness you gain. It is all forced upon you due to the circumstances, yet it is a blessing in disguise once you embrace it.

Self-awareness and facing yourself in the metaphorical mirror is not easy, yet it is a necessary evil. It enables you to shed the old skin and move forward into new growth. Just as a caterpillar turns into a butterfly, you too have to evolve.

It means facing your fears, letting go of your past and setting boundaries, and after a loss we are often thrown back into areas of our life where we have never healed, such as our childhoods or another relationship. Now is the time to do that, to let go of it all so it doesn’t follow you into the future. Without being catapulted into this situation by your grief, you may never have dealt with these issues, but now you have to, it’s part of your survival.

When every day is a struggle, the face you present to the world is exhausting, and your patience for life’s petty quarrels and dramas is waning, setting boundaries becomes important. When my husband passed, I made a vow to have no more fake friendships. I only wanted people in my life who cared for me as much as I cared for them. People who would just check in once in a while rather than it always being about them.

Do your healing, deal with the past and whether it is family or friendships, decide what is important to you for your well-being and set your boundaries. You will get resistance. Some will accuse you of holding onto the past, when in fact you have let go of it, hence the boundaries they don’t like. Some will never accept them, because they prefer to hold onto a story about you in their own minds and nothing you will ever do will change it, so don’t try. Be firm and believe in yourself. Nobody can hurt us anyway; we have suffered the worst pain by the loss of our spouse. In a way we are invincible.

Do the work, set your boundaries and be true to yourself and the right people will stay by your side.

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