I Climb Through Grief from the Bottom Up

I Climb Through Grief from the Bottom Up

It has been a while since I’ve written a column. Within one month, two of my relatives have passed away. Spiritually, I believe in eternal life. However, in my earthly existence, death has left its sting. Multiple deaths, physical pain, and disappointments have catapulted me into a cycle of grief. I am more than ready to end this psychological warfare. My mind longs to be free of desolation. I’m writing to confirm that even in brokenness, I will climb out from the abyss.

For the past few weeks, I’ve felt as though I have fallen apart. My emotions get the best of me at times. These times have compromised my tolerance level. I’m often agitated, and my spirit is heavy. My husband and parents have expressed their concerns. Most recently, one of my closest friends weighed in. My friend told me I’m not the Teresa she once knew. I used to be fun and lively, she said. That’s a paraphrase, but you get the picture. I cogitated on this for days. My friend is absolutely right. I am not the “Teresa” I used to be. Life is full of change, and it has undoubtedly changed me. Illness has changed me. Pain has changed me. I have adjusted to a new normal, and it was imperative for me to do so.

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Nonetheless, I am still Teresa. There is joy and there is sorrow. Periods of bitterness and bliss. Pain and unwavering faith. I am an extension of love, even in irksome moments. To expect me, or indeed anyone, to be happy all of the time is a fallacy. Aggravating circumstances and impediments to happiness exist. It is called life. No one walks in my shoes, nor can I walk in theirs. We are on our own paths, and I am comfortable in knowing that I am trying my best. I am the blade of grass that sprouts through the concrete. In despondency, I am whole.

I have physical and emotional scars. Holes in my soul and broken pieces. Ashes from the raging fires that surfaced in my life. Yet still I stand. My scars scream survivor. The holes and broken pieces allow the light to enter. The ashes signify that not all is lost. Hope is salvaged. As I sit and allow myself the time to grieve in the darkness, I will summon the light. Ascending from the cavity of gloom, I know there are better days ahead.

In closing: To anyone who may be having a difficult time, desolation is not your destination. Down does not mean out. MS and chronic illness significantly alter our lives, yet we still have our lives. The Serenity Prayer has been my saving grace throughout this time. As I reflect on the lives of those I’ve lost, I am reminded that life is fleeting. It is up to me to live well. Mind, body, and soul. Please send positive vibes my way as I climb from the bottom up.

“Proverbially, MS is a mountain that I am scaling one day at a time. I have moments where I slip and sometimes may even fall. The beauty is that I keep trying.” –Teresa Wright-Johnson, “The MS Mountain,” from “Something on Our Minds, Volume 4”:

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12 comments

  1. Michelle chandler says:

    Beautifully written and with such truth and feeling. Hope you continue to find your inner strength and power in. God bless you

  2. D.G. says:

    Touched by your column. Thank you for sharing your feelings, experiences, and outlook. It was an inspiration and I felt like I was sitting with a kindred spirit holding a cup of coffee. ❤

    • Teresa Wright-Johnson says:

      Hi D.G,
      I appreciate your sentiment. I am happy that the column inspired you. Best wishes to you.

  3. Ted Stephens says:

    Well written and very close to home. I just choose to say that when I fall down I get up. I doubt many realize that also means when I fall down emotionally I get up. Please keep getting back up.

    • Teresa Wright-Johnson says:

      Hi Ted,
      Thanks for reading the column and sharing your experience. I agree that we have to choose to get back up. I will continue trying to do so. Best wishes to you.

  4. Donna says:

    Beautifully written. You touch on a note to which we can all relate. The unescapable down moments in our life will occur, but we will cope in our own way!

    • Teresa Wright-Johnson says:

      Hi Donna,
      Thanks for your sentiment. I appreciate you and totally agree that we have to cope as best as we can on our own way.

  5. Jacqueline Elizondo says:

    It is a true blessing when I can read an article expressing exactly what I myself go through as well. May God bless you on your journey of hills and mountains of life that we all with MS must climb everyday.

    • Teresa Wright-Johnson says:

      Hi Jacqueline,
      Thanks for your heartfelt message. I appreciate it. May God continue to strengthen all on this journey of life and MS. Blessings to you.

    • Teresa Wright-Johnson says:

      Hi Patricia,
      Your response touched my heart. Thanks for reading the column and for your words of encouragement. I appreciate you.

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