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Why Grief Is Like a Monsoon

Like the approach of monsoon clouds, I felt the words move rapidly toward me.

Just like a monsoon, I got caught off guard.

I’ve been in monsoons before.

They rain fiercely, heavily, pack a mean punch and appear to never let up. As I felt the strength of the words hit me, my heart suddenly pounded into the base of my stomach. It’s that moment when the bottom of the world as we know it drops out and everything is washed away with an immeasurable ferocity. We frightfully grab and cling to anything and everything we can with the hope of reversing the damage. We’ve all been there. Swept up by the words and desperately trying to navigate, I struggled.

Scientifically, a monsoon is a seasonal reversal accompanied by corresponding changes resulting from asymmetry. In this way loss, of any form (marriage, relationship, friendship, family), is much like a monsoon. The body is somehow expected to maneuver the corresponding changes from prevailing emotional reversal. No matter how many occurrences or how hard we try, we just can’t mentally or physically prepare.

I wasn’t prepared.

As with most storms, there is always collateral damage. For me, that came in the form of lost friendships and altered familial relationships, but most significantly, the slippery slope of depression and anxiety that I now battle daily. These monsoons changed my self-perception and grossly underscored an internal feeling of inadequacy. Each storm offering my mind the rationalization that I was simply “not enough.”

This time was no different.

Storms are followed by both a cleanup and rebuild. We hastily tuck things away as a preventative measure, in the anticipation of future storms, with the hope they won’t be unearthed again. Unfortunately, the next storm quickly reveals the weathered weaknesses of the past. Old wounds exposed. New wounds made.

Suddenly, it’s impossible to avoid that slope of depression.

I am submerged in the familiar darkness once again.

This piece originally appeared on the GoodGrief blog.

Getty image via fcscafeine

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