When You're too Young to Die
At 5 years old, you don't quite understand what's happening when you are told that your mom is in the hospital and she has to stay there for the next few months. All you know is that she is sick and won't be able to be with you like before. This was the beginning of my mom's journey after being diagnosed with a Brain Tumor, CANCER. We hear that word (CANCER) and we shutter at the thought of losing someone, and many of us have. It feels like you have no power to fight this beast and fear creeps in, to control your thoughts and life. My mom beat cancer when I was young and my two sisters and I grew up having a normal life with our parents, but somewhere in the back of my mind I knew that the possibility of it returning was there. Scenes of her death would flash before my eyes and I tried with all my might to push them away and remain positive, but that possibility was always looming in the background of my thoughts. As we grew older her symptoms returned and we realized the fight had once again begun and our hope and prayer was that she would beat the odds and kick cancer in the face, but as time passed on, we realized that this was not to be. May 20, 2008- the day I had feared and thought about in my nightmares had come true. My mom passed away at the young age of 49. I was 25 at the time and had two small children. I wasn't ready to be without her. We had just barely begun to have a good relationship, because let's face it, I wasn't all that easy to parent as a teenager. I needed her advice and those early morning calls. We lived on the west coast and she was on the east coast, so when she would call at 8am her time, it woke me up before the sun at 5am! When you have small kids and you're not getting any sleep, it's like waking a bear that desperately needed it's beauty rest. Although her death has made the biggest impact on my life, it has also allowed me to grow in ways that could not have expected. I have been able to connect with others who have suffered loss and been a listening ear when they thought no one knew how they felt. Even though I wish my mother was still here with me, I thank God for the chance to help others go through this pain. If you are going through this pain right now, whether it is you that is terminally ill, a family member, or a close friend, please know I feel for that heartache and pain you are going through. I understand the desperate moments of searching for relief. May I offer you three ways that I have helped me in those times of darkness, when I thought that the light of day was never going to come. 3 WAYS TO DEAL WITH DEATH & LOSS: 1. WRITE & BURN- This technique allows you to write out your feelings and really say what is going on inside of you. You may be able to write things that you cannot say out loud and allow for those feelings to be released. Writing them allows your soul and mind to get rid of those negative feelings that are weighing and holding you down. Write them out and then you can burn, tear up or throw away the paper. It's a mental and emotional release. If you don't allow yourself to release these feelings they become bottled up inside of you. It can literally eat away at you until one day you feel lifeless or ready to explode. 2. FIND YOUR PEOPLE- Find the people that are going to be there for you in good times and in bad. We all need that support system of those who can lift you up and help you in the different phases of life. This also will help you to feel like you belong somewhere and have purpose, because you will one day be called on to help lift them up in their trials. 3. KEEP A GRATITUDE JOURNAL- Being able to see the good in life, no matter what is happening has helped me to remain positive. I still have those down moments when I wish my mom was here, but I remember all the things that I've been blessed with and it brings me great joy. I keep a running journal or list of things I'm grateful for and add to it daily, even if it's just one word. "No matter our circumstances, no matter our challenges or trials, there is something in each day to embrace and cherish. There's something in each day that can bring gratitude and joy if only we will see and appreciate it." -President Dieter F. Uchtdorf I know dealing with pain and loss can be difficult, but life is still good and there are still things going on around you that are amazing. Let us look for those things and be grateful for all that life has to offer. Even though my mom is no longer with me, I still feel her influence around me, and it helps me daily to strive onward and become the person I was meant to be, the person I know she wants me to be.
About the Author: Aaron & Veronica Benson are the husband and wife coaching duo that make up Benson Coaching. They both have years of experience working with others to overcome things holding them back in life and focus on moving forward. They present on topics like mindset training, confidence building, how to set goals and really achieve them, as well as relationship training. Find out more by clicking here.