accepting the sadness

I let myself cry about it this morning, at last.  Big, fat tears bouncing down my face, dripping off the end of my nose and streaming from my chin.  I knew they were coming, and waited all day yesterday for the dam to be released. But yesterday I couldn’t do it, couldn’t open the floodgates on the emotions that would acknowledge this reality.  My heart broke when I told Natalie the election results, but there was morning basketball practice to get to and breakfast to make.  Life, for my children, had to keep its steady clip.

I don’t know what’s best in a situation like this–do I expose the full weight of my devastation to my children? Or, do I hide my fear and anxiety, protecting them from seeing that their mother is floundering and helpless? I don’t want to project my emotions on them, but I also want to teach them that these kinds of feelings are okay. I want to protect them, but I don’t want to shelter them from reality.  I am searching for the right way to be both vulnerable and strong, but I haven’t found it yet.

All I know, right now, is that I need to keep practicing self-care.  I told myself yesterday that I could have the day to grieve, but I need more.  Those tears were a start, as were the many mugs of tea, the hot shower, the snuggles from my babies, the brisk fall air, and the hand of my partner. More love, more kindness, more gentle thoughts–these are the items on my agenda.  Sending others who are stunned and grieving a virtual hand to hold.

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