Tag Archives: grief

Go Outside

As many of you know, I lost my girlfriend in a tragic accident last year. My grief comes in waves. Sometimes I feel overwhelmed by anxiety and start to have panic attacks. Whenever I start feeling antsy I have to find a way to calm myself down. There are lots of tricks and techniques you can do, like slowly counting down from twenty or maybe petting a dog or cat. I’ve found the most efficient thing is to go outside.

Being indoors makes me feel claustrophobic when I’m anxious. I’m very aware of the walls around me. I feel trapped and confined. So I go outside. I try to be aware of the wind on my skin. I look at the plants and trees around me. I gaze up at the sky, taking note of the clouds or stars. I listen for bird song, I observe insects scurrying about, I try to take it all in.

It reminds me that I’m only a speck in the universe. There is a much bigger picture. It helps to ground me and bring me back to normal. Going outside isn’t a magical cure all, but it provides temporary relief.

I don’t know what to do if a panic attack hits me when I’m already outside though. Still have to figure out a solution for that one.

Critically Rated at 14/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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My Mandy Dream

I had my first (and so far only) dream about Mandy a few weeks ago. It was weird but a bit of a relief because I was worried and wondering why I hadn’t had one yet. Why haven’t I seen her even though she’s always on my mind? When Josh died, I saw him every time I saw someone wearing a red plaid shirt. I couldn’t escape him. Why wasn’t I seeing Mandy?

I finally saw her in one of those quick morning dreams. Where you wake up but don’t want to start the day and try to go back to bed. The magical place between sleep and awake. That’s where I saw her.

I was at a holiday party, filled with friends and family, it felt like it was Christmas time, and I was going from room to room looking for her. I found her in the kitchen, sitting on a stool by the counter. She was sitting next to a bearded hipster that doesn’t exist in real life, but I recognized him as a mutual friend. I wasn’t surprised to see her, she wasn’t a ghost or anything. She was still my girlfriend and we were just at a holiday party. I walked over to her and we started to talk about whatever.

Out of the blue, she causally mentioned that she made out with our bearded hipster friend. I was taken aback, like what the fuck did you just say? You made out with him? And she said, “Yeah, I made out with him. Your mom saw us.” She said it so matter-of-factly, like it wasn’t a big deal.

“You made out with him? And my mom saw you?”

“Yeah. You were in the room too,” she said, like it was totally normal to cheat on me. Obviously I was pissed and told her I was breaking up with her. Then I woke up mad. I was still half asleep, I was angry, until I realized that I finally had a dream about her, smiled, and closed my eyes to go try to find her again. I drifted off to another random dream, one without her or the holiday party or the random bearded hipster friend that doesn’t really exist.

I have a few theories about what my dream meant. It means that I feel betrayed. That she hurt me so much and didn’t realize or care. And that I want closure that I’m never going to get.

I felt a sense of relief. It was as if a weight was lifted off my chest. For the next few days I felt so much lighter. I thought it was a breakthrough in my grieving process. It didn’t last. It comes in waves and I got hit by a tsunami a few days later.

I’m glad I had the dream though. I got to see her and talk to her again. Yeah, the subject matter sucks, but it’s better than my reality.

Critically Rated at 9/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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