G-R-I-E-F

by Vikki RamdassNovember 4, 2021View more posts from Vikki Ramdass

G-R-I-E-F. What does this simple but devastating five letter word really mean? Grief: does it mean to mourn or cry, or simply miss someone dear to you? Grief can be described as a lot of things to many different people, but it is never an easy word to swallow. I personally have been dealing with death all my life, so this topic of grief soon became my new way of life.

So, let’s start at the beginning. I was born in 1985, but I only had one grandparent. She died when I was a teenager, so then I had none. Grief. In 2004, my mother passed away from stage IV ovarian cancer. Grief. In 2009, my boyfriend died in a car accident. Grief again. In 2018, my cousin died from stage II triple negative breast cancer. Guess what: grief, again and again.

Story of my life; this word kept hitting me like a tornado, over and over again. I began to ask myself if I was cursed or just had bad luck. I struggled immensely. Why was I constantly faced with all these challenges at a young age? Why can’t I just have a normal life with grandparents and parents? Were these things too much to ask for in life?

I soon realized that I was all on my own, mainly because no one really understood what it was like to grow up alone. When I came home from school, there was no home-cooked meal for me, no clothes prepared for the next day of work, nor was there anyone to listen to my stories of the day. Sad, but this was my reality. Oh Lord, please tell me, what did I ever do that was so wrong in this life?

Just when I thought I caught a break from it all, I was diagnosed with stage I triple negative breast cancer myself. At this point, I really had enough in this life. I was prepared to die. I refused to take chemo treatment, as I was just fed up of fighting all the time just to work and live a nice, quiet, simple and peaceful life, something I never really had.

I told myself and all my friends that it was indeed a good life for me, despite all my hardships. I chose to help and inspire others along my journey, so thanks for being there for me and having faith. I never thought that I would have received so much support and confidence from other people that it felt very wrong of me to just give up on myself without even trying.

People held prayer group sessions and called on the phone. I had virtual plus face-to-face counseling. All positive things in my life when I needed them the most. I guess I was wrong; my whole life, I thought that I was not loved, but mysterious things happen to those who believe. To my surprise, I completed my chemo, plus radiation treatment. When I did all my scans and blood tests, the doctor told me that I was now “cancer free,” and that whole scenario should be a thing of the past.

Was I dreaming? Did that really happen to me? This once very broken person now had to find the strength to move forward in life. The beauty about this situation is that I now have real friends and family whom I have learned to love. I learned that when things happen to us, it makes us want to empower others through our stories. You can choose to let this word called “grief” consume you or find ways to move past it like a speeding vehicle. When this word no longer provides pain to you, only then can you live your best life; you are worth it!

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