A Happy and Thankful Life

Perspective and Joy

Facebook has this lovely feature when you can see what you posted in the past on that day. I say lovely even though I spent quite a long time avoiding it. I remembered enough dates from 5-8 years ago that I didn’t want to relive. 
That changed at some point last year and I started clicking on that button. Yesterday, I had a moment where I saw a post about J’s lack of clarity and remembered all that helplessness. To that version of me, I knew what would happen in a few days and just 3.5 weeks later. If I could warn or prepare her in some way, I would. But the past can’t be changed. 
What I focused on were the other posts on June 1st. They included happy memories of our oldest nieces graduating and of spending time with those three amazing girls, amongst others.  Thinking back, many of my “on this day” includes those harsh reminders but many more happy or silly reminders. 
The “on this day” posts have made me realize that somewhere along the way, I found my joy again. There was a time in the year after J died that I felt as though I would never find joy again. Everything was so dark. Even though I had smarter people than myself talking with me during the grief support group and I was reading blogs of widows that have “been there, done that”, I couldn’t see an end to the rawness of my pain. But as I continue reading the “one this day” those happy and silly posts are woven amongst the few heartbreaking posts. Those posts serve as a gentle reminder not just of how fragile life is but of how much I’ve survived. I made it through. That experience is a huge part of who I am but that isn’t the only thing I am. 
Time and life both have a way of fixing that. Yes, I miss him. But…I’m alive. I will never be the same girl I was 5-8 years ago. This experience changed me. My joy is different…my goals and priorities are different. I am finding the ability to redefine my happiness as I go. Being reminded of my journey, reminds me of how much joy is out there and inside me. I’m grateful for that clarity and for finding joy again.