PART 5: Exploring Grief Post Trauma

“The moment that I accepted it, it changed.“
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Hi, I’m Jess, a Survivor of Chronic Illness and your Host for this Topic Talk.
Let’s talk about the role Acceptance plays in grief.
With us right now, is the wonderful Tommy.
— a beautifully compassionate soul, a TBI Warrior,
and one of our leaders in Genyus.
Tommy, in 1-2 minutes, can you tell us …
Q: Have there been moments in the grieving process (for you) where you have accepted and surrendered to what is? And if so, what happened?
Thank you for that, Jess. Thank you so much for letting me be on here and just give some of my grief story.
So yeah, “grief”. You know, we go through grief… I mean, I died. Not literally, but May 30th 2018, so my anniversary is coming up. You know — me, we, I — something died in my on May 30th when I went through my accident and I got my TBI and my body got broken. There’s a lot of… DEATH there.
We lost something, I lost something.
I say “we” because there are two “me’s”. Because I lost this guy, but here’s this other man now that went through this grieving process. I was at that time, highly involved in the community, had lost of friends, lots of family that I tried to intertwine with and there were plenty of times I failed due to competing priorities… and now lots of — would’ve, could’ve, should’ve’s.
And when you get that wake-up call, and May 30th was that wake-up call because my life really slowed down for me. My TBI robbed me of my memory. I had amnesia for a little over a month. I had long-term, short-term memory loss. My body broke. Divorce. I just got the paperwork today, literally.
So the grieving process always goes, and when we go through denial and we are about to get through that anger and we bargain with ourselves also, “okay, how can I get through this?” “Okay, let’s try to do something else.”
When I can’t remember something, it’s like, “let’s bargain something else and let’s try and pull something through.” But when it really comes down to the acceptance of it, if we don’t go through all of the “five stages”, it’s literally not going to happen. That’s never-ending. Like when we grieve for the loss of a family member, you’re always going to remember it.
Accepting who I used to be and what I used to be able to do, and doing what I can today to pay forward what I know I used to be able to do — hence being a coach, or being here talking. I wasn’t able to talk when this first took place. So I was like “ I’m going to go do something so I can continue. I’m here for a reason now, let’s accept it, let’s move on. Quit being depressed, get out of this funk.”
Being the acceptance and moving forward and paying it forward now, is never-ending. Grief is an ongoing life journey. So when we accept it and go through these stages, that’s where I become at peace with things.
So, in short, in a nutshell, that’s where I’m at right now with grief and acceptance.
Amazing, Tommy. You know, I hear a lot, and in my experience as well, that the moment you accept it, that’s when things change for you. And you’re talking about being at peace, and we can only move forward from that place. I really appreciate you sharing that.
I knew, given your background in mindfulness,
the person you are,
and your lived expertise,
That you’d have so much richness to add to this topic, so I really appreciate it.
Thank you very much. I get a little choked up when we get personal and get passionate.
Haha, that’s okay. 🙂
Now Tommy and I would love to hear from you…
Q: Have there been moments in the grieving process where you have accepted and surrendered to what is? What happened?

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