PART THREE: Exploring Grief
Jessica Robin Anwyl: Hi, I’m Jess, a Survivor of Chronic Illness and your Host for this Topic Talk. Let’s talk about the First Way We Dealt With Grief. With us right now, is the lovely Leasha — an awesomely optimistic and amazing advocate for others, a Stroke Survivor, and one of our leaders in Genyus Leasha, in 1-2 minutes, can you tell us … What was one of your first experiences of grief? And, in feeling that grief, what was your first instinct? How did you cope? What did you do? How did you deal with it?
Leasha: Hi Jess! Thanks for having me here today. I, like many people, would’ve felt pretty scared and frightened at the start with any trauma they have suffered. It’s a snowballing feeling sometimes, you sit there and you ponder…
What am I going to be able to do after this? Am I going to be able to live my life in the same way? Am I going to be able to function again properly? How I felt before? And sometimes it happens… sometimes it doesn’t.
But for me personally, initially, I was frightened, but I thought ‘I just gotta dig deep at this point, and just push, push as hard as you can and just try’, because while I was grieving for a potential loss that I wasn’t even aware of, because with brain injury, you don’t get told how it’s going to work out.
You don’t know. You’re grieving, potentially, for things that may or may not return. I just thought, ‘I can’t let this define me. I can’t let this be the end. So I’m gonna push. I’m gonna push as hard as I can. I’m going to try as hard as I can for the life that I want to live. I feel now that I’ve gotten to a point where I am definitely on that path, but it’s a hard road, and it definitely takes a lot out of anyone that has to go down something like that, that path.
Jess: Absolutely, and you’re an incredible warrior and absolutely, a survivor.
Leasha: Thank you, so are you!
Jess: Anyone with eyes can see that. Aw, thank you, Leash! Thank you for sharing that, I really appreciate it.
Now Leasha and I would love to hear from you…
Q: Thinking back to an early experience of grief, what was your first instinct when you felt that way? How did you cope? What did you do? How did you deal with it?