Sunday, October 7, 2012

Preparing For Your Rainy Season

Many years ago...actually, several decades ago, I read Les Brown's Live Your Dreams. I was quickly enthralled with the messages in this book, and I especially identified with the reverence that oozed from the pages in which he described his feelings toward his mother. He was a "mama's" boy, and so was I.

Live Your Dreams marked my introduction to positive reading, and it also made me aware of the concept of "rainy" seasons. Les Brown stated in his book..."All of us will have a rainy season, and if you haven't had one - get ready; it's coming - and it may be just around the corner."
A rainy season has nothing to do with seasonal conditions; it has to do with the time in your life in which you experience the loss of several people that you are close to - all within a short span of time.

My first rainy season commenced with the estrangement of my two stepdaughters, disintegration of a 25 year friendship, and culminated with the passing of my mother after a two year bout with cancer. These ties, were deep and emotionally dynamic. How does one recover from such loss?

By not viewing them as losses.

The key to my survival was viewing each situation as a gain, instead of a loss - which contradicts the way we are conditioned to think (reframing). If you appreciate how the perceived lost relationships have enriched your life, and focus on that reality, it will effectively offset a great deal (not all) of the pain.

This perspective was the umbrella that prevented me from getting soaked in the downpour of prolonged sadness, lingering depression, and disruptive anxiety - all potential residual affects of a rainy season. It also enabled me to navigate through the 5 stages of grief, and embrace the world - my world - as a person whose life is now enriched as a result of those who were once a part of it. This coping strategy can work for you as well.

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