Feelings are ALWAYS valid (Archives)

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Feelings are ALWAYS valid

We don’t have to meet every deadline. We don’t have to greet every day with a perfect smile. Some days require all of my energy to throw back the covers and put my feet on the floor. And on those days, that is my something. And on others, I have learned to bargain. -Miranda Hernandez, Adrian's Mother

You are under no obligation to greet every day with a smile

I used to feel so much pressure to perform; to meet a certain standard at work and in life. And the worst part was, the bulk of this pressure was internal; something I demanded of myself. And then my son died, and I realized I didn’t have it in me to keep up with these illusory standards.

Notes for the Bereaved -  Losing a child at any age is hard. It doesn't matter how far along you were. It doesn't matter if there was anything "wrong" with the baby or if he or she would not have been compatible with life. It doesn't even matter how many other children you have, either before or after your loss. You are always, always, ALWAYS allowed to feel whatever and however you need.  - Miranda Hernandez, Adrian's Mother

Losing a child at ANY age is hard

It doesn’t matter how far along you were. It doesn’t matter if there was anything “wrong” with the baby or if he or she would not have been compatible with life. It doesn’t even matter how many other children you have, either before or after your loss. You are ALWAYS allowed to feel what you need.

Close up of a white flower with skinny pointed petals, taken in Victoria, British Columbia (Miranda Hernandez)

The Words We Use Matter

I think we are all familiar with the golden rule, but one of the most powerful things I have ever heard was to follow the platinum rule: treat people how THEY prefer to be treated.⁠ The words we use matter. And if you can’t say something kind, or supportive, maybe don’t say anything, at all.

I have the right to feel how I feel, for as long as I feel it, regardless of circumstances  or whether someone else  feels differently.  -Miranda Hernandez Adrian's Mother

I have the right to feel how I feel

Feelings aren’t required to be rational or reasonable, nor to follow anyone else’s expectations. I have the right to feel how I feel, for as long as I feel it, regardless of circumstances or whether someone else feels differently.

Feelings are always valid, Even when they aren’t rational; Even when they are "negative"; Even when other people wish you felt differently.  Feelings are always valid.  -Miranda Hernandez Adrian's Mother

Feelings are ALWAYS valid

One of the more important things I’ve learned is that if what you’re feeling is authentic, then it’s valid, no matter what. Feelings don’t have to follow rules; they just exist.

You are under no obligation to be healed—Not today, and not at any point in the future. It is always always ALWAYS okay not to be okay. -Miranda Hernandez, Adrian's Mother

You are under no obligation to be healed

There is often this perception that healing is a required part of the process of grief. I don’t believe this is true. Healing is and must always be the choice of the individual.

Forced positivity is toxic.

Forced Positivity is Toxic

Some people do choose to find positivity after loss, and I think that’s great. I think it’s an example of the many ways different people respond differently. But it’s not what I choose. And in my opinion, feelings must be an individual choice.

You are always always ALWAYS allowed to feel how you feel, with no obligation to cheer up, look on the bright side, or snap out of it. Your feelings are valid and so are you. -Miranda Hernandez, Adrian's Mother

You are always allowed to feel how you feel

Pain and grief can make outsiders uncomfortable, and sometimes they may urge you to heal and be your positive self again. This is a reminder that you are always allowed to feel however you need to.

My feelings are authentic and I own them completely. -Miranda Hernandez, Adrian's Mother

My feelings are authentic and I own them completely

I’ve been running into a trend recently when I talk about Adrian’s death, especially when I share more “uncomfortable” feelings such as anger or regret. People seem to feel like they need to urge me to find peace or to otherwise feel differently. I wish more people understood the power in authenticity; in feeling whatever and however one needs.

Original statement: "Positive vibes only." Rewritten: Authentic vibes only. -Miranda Hernandez, Adrian's Mother

“Positive Vibes Only”

“Positive vibes only” sounds like a great message, but it unfortunately acts as erasure of the full emotional spectrum. Authenticity is always preferable.

My pain has a purpose. Please stop trying to take it away from me. -Miranda Hernandez, Adrian's Mother

My pain has a purpose

I understand your intentions in wanting to take away my pain. It’s hard to see someone you love hurting. It’s hard to acknowledge there’s nothing you can do. What I need you to understand: (My) pain has a purpose. It speaks to the love I hold for my child. In seeking to take it away, you take away my love as well. You take away ME.

"It's okay to not be okay as long as you don't stay that way" Rewritten: It's okay to not be okay.

It’s okay to not be okay (as long as you don’t stay that way)

It’s a common saying: “It’s okay to not be okay as long as you don’t stay that way.” I disagree. Why do we put a time limit on reality? It’s only when we recognize that ALL feelings are valid, that we have the space we need to make genuine change. And even then, change is optional. It has to be.

Miranda and Adrian's Elephant

Perspective

We are all living in uncertainty. We are all scared. We are all doing the very best we can. And you have every right to your feelings, even if they seem silly.

Wildflowers over Te Ti Bay (Miranda Hernandez)

“It’s Not Your Fault”

I think people are conditioned to tell bereaved parents it isn’t their fault because they are worried. If parents blame themselves, what might they then do?

Lakeside in Incline Village, North Lake Tahoe, Nevada (Miranda Hernandez)

13 Feb 2018 – The Condition of My Heart

I write a lot about this concept of numbness. I think that before, I would have described it as a lack of feeling. “I am empty, I am numb.” I realize today it’s something quite different.

Explore more of Adrian's Elephant

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