“I hate your stinking guts… you are the scuuumm between my toes”
– a real one, Alf Alfa
Grief is a complex AF. Whether it’s for a loved one, a relationship, a friend, a job; hell, if you’re on the right path ofself-healing, you’ll find yourself grieving the person you used to be or any expectations of whom you would become. Unfortunately, with any hardships, Black women are thrust intothe position to be strong without any concern for how it affects us. With this said, what space are we permitted to fully process this insanely complex emotion and how can we manage it? We tend to be there for everyone and everything in our lives, and in return, we’re given the assumption that regardless we’ll be “okay”.
Sure, being “okay” is inevitable but the act of processing grief depends on the griever, and what may work for some, may not work for all. It isn’t just about getting over it but getting through the best and healthiest way possible while accepting this new identity placed on you. So, cry, shout, set boundaries, talk to someone qualified, step away—you are allowed all these things. We are entitled to that experience; we are beautifully human, and this is one of the most personal experiences we can have as beings.
It’s a weird-ass club that none of us asked to be a part of and here we are, so don’t feel guilty or ashamed about whatever place you’re at. Give yourself the grace you need to heal.There’s going to be an array of emotions because of how unscripted this is and there is no manual. Anyone that says differently is imposing their own beliefs onto you, so to hell with them! We must endure this pillar in our lives and yet it offers so much growth because there are no rules. So, move how you feel is best for you. Don’t edit yourself to fit this narrative that healing requires you to only be strong—it isn’t worth it.
I’ve dealt with an unfortunate amount of grief in my life, and each time I was told things such as: “put on your big girl panties”, “you don’t need therapy, just pray”, or my favorite “puton your armor”, and they would never sit right with me, and they were so exhausting. It wasn’t until losing my best friend, my Nana, that I got tired of trying to fit into this mold. While fully grieving, I surrendered myself to everything I felt and called BS every time someone tried me with that nonsensebecause I knew I was going to be left with this feeling in the end. Also, high key, the advice was trash and from people who haven’t done the emotional work as well. What did I look like taking notes from them? Now I’m not going to sit here and pretend I don’t still grieve, I do every day, but knowing that I deserve as much grace as I have allowed others gets me through. I cry when I need to, talk about it when I can, my therapist wasA1, and He continues to provide hope that I can get through this. So, for anyone going through ANY kind of loss, I want you to know you are valid in EVERYTHING you feel, there is no wrong or right way, just as long as it’s healthy. “Biiiiish you doing a good job” and I’m rooting for you.
To my two loves, I didn’t get to meet, we love you.
And to my sister, as long as I’m here, know I’ll be here for you.