My best friend just left late this evening on a flight home to Boston, after a six-day trip to see me over the New Year’s weekend and I’m feeling pretty sad right now because of it, but that’s ok, as I truly believe that feeling sad is way better than not feeling at all.
I’ve always been the kind of person who struggles with the departure of when a loved one visits me. For years I’d consistently numb myself from feeling any of that sorrow once they were gone. Addictions became a great resource to achieve that. Alcohol and drugs were the first to cover up that sadness. Caffeine and especially heavy chocolate-based desserts became the second. And finally, sexually-charged conversations, pornography, and hook-ups became the third and last unhealthy solution I used to deal with something that I never liked facing when it happened.
But I don’t believe that’s what life is meant to be about, that being to numb ourselves from feeling sadness, or any other type of pain for that matter. Rather, I think we’re all meant to feel every one of our emotions in entirety, as it’s part of the healing process. And ironically, any time I numbed myself with something instead of allowing myself to feel those emotions in entirety, only made my sorrow come out sideways much later.
That’s why I’m choosing to write about my grief in a blog entry tonight, instead of doing something toxic that will only make me feel worse in the long run. Of course, I must admit it’s not easy doing this with my best friend being over 600 miles away now and given I probably won’t see him again until the summer. But, I’m grateful to have good memories of his trip here and eventually that’s all of what will remain once the sorrow of his departure has passed, because this sorrow always does pass. But if I chose to not feel this sorrow, it’s only going to get pushed down within me, causing me to remain on a numb-based path, which is precisely how I often got wrapped up in so many addictions.
Look, I know going through sorrow or feeling any type of pain isn’t easy, but I really have come to see that it’s far better to deal with it head-on rather than drink heavily, or pop a pill to fall asleep, or engage in seedy conversations with people I don’t know, or do any other action that will only prolong the inevitable.
The inevitable being that I never was able to fully run from feeling the pain of anything, like a loved one’s departure. It ALWAYS caught up with me at some point. So, I’ve learned to seek God in that pain now, to write about it, and in the process, I’ve been able to spiritually grow far stronger and healthier and much faster at that, than any of those times in life I ever opted to remain numb instead…
Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson