Cleaning your emotional house
In an effort to follow up on the first blog post. ‘Know You Are Not Alone;’ This installment will introduce the ‘what’ causes of emotional decline associated with Breast Cancer and a husband’s role. Granted, this disease is insidious as any hidden from diagnosis or missed completely until the inevitable is obvious. As husbands, most, if not all of us, are ill-equipped to handle intense emotional disquiet. I had one foot in the world of social and family imprinting. The other in the degradation of my role as the supportive husband with the label of suffering survivor’s grief. The universal and willing loss of self, being a caregiver to the disquiet of being alone, happens abruptly. The patriarchal head of the house is stoic, has an answer, and shows resolve in any situation. All this had no credence or place in the finality of loss or during a spouse's treatment. The lessons from parents, peers, religion, and social responsibility to the community growing up offer no answers for the ‘what’ factor relating to grief. Has fewer credentials as tools and experience to fall back on; it leaves a person genuinely wanting. The ‘what’ do I do, say, or feel to find peace, solace, and escape the emotional pain of loss—all natural expressions of emotion. Ask yourself, is the disease truly the ‘what,’ or is something else contributing to the decline of self-respect, esteem, or faith in oneself? This question is essential to discovering long-ago-buried hurt, otherwise described as trauma and shoved into the rabbit hole of past emotional disquiet brought to the forefront by survivors’ grief. List as many of the ‘what's in your emotional house, and think about their impact. Writing them down is a giant step in the right direction. This process will become an essential tool, aiding the cleaning of the emotional house— one sweep of the pen at a time. The next topic will be ‘Why’ cleaning the emotional house is essential.