I used to hate the month of November. I don't mean the way I dislike January and February because it's still winter-cold, wet and grey. I mean November was my least favorite month out of all 12. I have experienced so much loss in the month of November over the years that, other than Thanksgiving, I had nothing good to say about it. I faced the month with dread, wondering what might happen.
The first loss I experienced was my first family dog that we had since I was a babe. I let her out when my sister and I had returned home from school and she had gotten out of the fence and was hit. I felt so much guilt for not checking on her and bringing her in. Within a week my grandfather passed from cancer. A few years later my other grandfather was on his deathbed but passed December 2nd. Years later, 2016, My husband and I were in a head-on collision when a driver crossed the double line. I was in my first trimester at the time and first pregnancy (I'll share this in another blog post). I ended up miscarrying a week and a half later, whether it was from the accident or just because we will never know. The same week I miscarried our families each put down their family dog. See why I hated November so much?
November 2017 added a little sweetness to the bitterness. I gave birth to our daughter on the same day and almost same hour that I had lost our other babies. In the year between miscarriage and birth, I did a lot of soul searching as I healed from my physical, emotional and mental injuries. I spent a lot of time in prayer and sobs talking with God, asking him for peace and healing. I asked him to show me what I could learn from this and how I could help others. I now choose to see November in a different light, bittersweet. I now use the month of November to put extra focus on gratitude and to reflect on all the ways I love, have loved and received love, even through loss. Those family pets were so special, so beloved and showed their love for me. I had a special relationship with each one. The grandfathers I lost shared and taught me so much. I always felt loved by them and loved them in return. Our relationships were special built on memories and moments I'll always cherish.
Have you experienced loss? Turn your grief and sadness bittersweet by focusing on how you loved and was loved in return. If you need help processing reach out.