I have to admit that I was completely and utterly dreading the holidays. And so, I sought advice from a friend who is years out walking this same road we are all treading, and felt it important to share her perspective as one who has “made it”… Quite possibly a perspective we could all use in our season of life.
“Fake it till you make it.”
It sounds fickle…but there was greater depth to those words than I initially saw.
Smile for the cameras. That smile isnt for the cameras.
Your smile is for your husband who works so hard and tries so hard to be everything you need.
Smile for your kids, they need to know their mama can still smile and that joy still lives within you (however deeply buried at the moment).
Smile for you. Smile through the pain. Not because it will fix it. Not because it will hurt any less, but because (if you are like me) you need to remem ber how to smile again.
Put on the holiday music that you’d rather avoid all together, put up the decorations that you can.Continue traditions that you’re able, and toss the other ones – at least for this year. And start something new.
“Fake it till you make it”.
Though this “faking it” is painful, it is an important part of the healing process. A critical wall to overcome. An important battle to fight. Something, though seemingly impossible, that we must do at some point in our grief.
We all want to avoid it. But those who never face this hard stuff, can never truly get through grief completely. And for me, one day, I need to get through.
Part of working through grief, is getting through the hard stuff- holidays, anniversaries, birthdays, due dates, announcement days …
After all, we can’t live in grief forever.We might want to now. But in the depths of our hearts, we all want to be through this one day- Not today, but one day.
So maybe the words “fake it till you make it” don’t initially sound like words of wisom. But what if they are?
Dear mama, please understand that I am not saying cover up your feelings and repress your grief and just live a “fake” life.
I am saying to live your grief. Share your tears, your anger, your hurt.
But live your grief with joy.
I have found that sometimes initially “faking” a smile lets down some walls and I start to actually feel that smile, that joy, within me. It’s rarely expected. It usually feels “backwards” to my grieving heart. But in those moments, when you can feel your smile, when you can feel your rare laughter- these are healing moments dear mother!
These moments are you getting through the hardest thing in your life. this is you starting to move forward. Not move on, but move forward. This is you being the you that you want to be, that you are designed to be…but is often hidden behind your grief.
“The best way out is always through.”- Helen Keller
So, dear mama, sometimes “fake it till you make it” is exactly what we need, so that one day, we can actually say ” I made it”.