Each leaf is completely individual, just like you.
Each one changes and let's go in it's own time and so can you.
I recently lost somebody who was very special to me and sometimes the grief can be overwhelming and it catches me when I am least expecting it to.
Sometimes something sparks a memory and that is enough to trigger the tears and emotions that take over and leave me feeling heartbroken all over again.
Grief isn't new to me, I have lost some really special people and pets over the years and yet it still doesn't get easier and nor would I want it to.
The hurt that I feel is because they were so important to me and each one has left a footprint on my heart that I wouldn't be without, for each one of them has changed and shaped me into the person that I am today.
I used to be really impatient with myself and tell myself to "Just get on with it" or tell myself that I "should" feel a certain way and the more that I fought the feelings and fought with myself the worse I would feel. I would put a time limit on things and tell myself to be over it by a certain date but of course you can't do that and I ended up making myself feel worse by putting pressure on.
There is no time limit on grief and we all deal with things in different ways and that's okay.
I am embracing the emotions as they present themselves rather than burying them only for them to come at me ten fold later on.
I have found that when I allow the tears to flow unrestricted it feels so much better than when I try to hold them back. I think it's really important for my children to see me cry too, they need to know that it's okay to show emotion and that it it isn't a weakness.
Sometimes when I feel really low there are a few things that help me -
Writing my thoughts and feelings down, I don't have to share them with anybody unless I want to but it helps to get them off of my mind.
Walking and talking is great, when I walk with somebody I don't have to make eye contact so the words flow more easily, plus fresh air is energising and the feel of the weather on my face makes me feel alive.
Gratitude, thinking about what I have to be thankful for, however small can be life affirming.
Giving myself time and patience and not being afraid to say no to anything I don't feel ready for.
I try not to feel guilty for living and enjoying myself, the best way I can honour those that I have lost is by living my life in the best way possible.
Letting go doesn't mean never thinking of them or talking about them, it is remembering them with love but also continuing to live without the overwhelming feelings that take my breath away.
There is no rush, imagine how dull autumn would be if each leaf changed colour and fell from the tree at the exact same time. We aren't meant to be the same, we do things only when we are ready.