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Well, you’re…you.

Grief has no right answer, and that's OK.

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Mila,

When you look back at 2021, you’re going to see a lot of failures.

Your marriage. Your quest for further stabilizing your business. Your A1C results in the first year after your diabetes misdiagnosis. The sheer number of blood sugar alarms you had to listen to.

Oh, and despite trying, you did not get better at playing your guitar (damn you, stubby fingers and long nails).

My hope for you is that even in this moment of tears, or anxiety, of your heart beating so hard inside of your chest that you feel like you’re going to die…is that you won’t die. You’ll survive every last bit of what hurts and haunts you.

Because you’re you, and you are much stronger than you believe.

Your mother used to tell you that on nights when you called her up with self-doubt about a project, or a fear.

“Well, you’re you! Have you ever failed before chicka?”

-Marcia

And despite how hard you are on yourself, you are kind, and wonderful. And despite what anyone else says, you are beautiful, your ambition is not a burden, and you deserve happiness above everything else.

Despite how anyone makes you feel – you are the incredible human being that you think you are. You don’t have to doubt it.

What I hope you see when you look at this year is how brilliant you were. How much shine you gave off, and how beautiful of a person you continue to become. How you made yourself happy, and did the best you could with what you had.

You made the hardest decision of your life to end a relationship that hurt you deeply, and forced you to shrink yourself for someone else’s comfort.

You stood up for what you wanted in a marriage, even if it meant you wouldn’t be able to see the future once the judge stamped the divorce decree.

You had an entire YEAR in business for yourself under your belt. And you financially supported yourself. A year ago you were terrified about how you would even afford health insurance, or medications, or if you’d be able even to pay yourself.

You took on ambitious projects and hyped yourself, even though you often see yourself as someone who isn’t doing their best…ever.

You went to therapy. You’re learning to be kinder to yourself and how to form bonds and relationships with people you care about while facing conflict and pain in the process.

Then your mom died. The person who reminded you that you are you wasn’t there to tell you that anymore. And suddenly little video snippets, and voicemails from old holidays were treasured gifts that made you feel warm. But also made you teary. She wasn’t here to see how you thrived. And it’s hard to remember the last tight squeeze, or the last night on the couch drinking tea and laughing. Or punching your brother as siblings do and getting yelled at.

Text Says: The countless hours of staring and walls and bursting into tears, that's OK. Typing two words in an email, and then collapsing because your whole body was exhausted? That's OK. Muting yourself, and turning off your camera during zoom calls to cry? That's OK. Putting your Mom's mini urn in your purse when you don't want to take a trip alone? Weird, but OK.

And while that hole will always feel like something is missing. The sudden loss made my bond stronger.

During that time, You opened your heart and met the most amazing man – someone who understands your emotions, never tells you that you’re too much, and brags about your accomplishments to everyone he can tell. He was there to hug you and cuddle in silence the day you got home from the most unimaginable night. He knew what you needed without asking, and despite some turmoil, was always the sweetest, and most loving presence.

And then, when he broke your heart on the 5th day of Hanukkah, you cried for the entire day, and still lit the menorah you bought so he could observe at your apartment if he needed to some nights.

And then went out with your friends the next night and had THE BEST time. You realized there wasn’t a need to settle for what you wanted. And the person you spend forever with doesn’t have to be afraid of your emotions because you’re not scared of them…anymore, at least.

Even though 2021 was hellish year that led to 2022 – another hellish year – it’s OK to feel both blessed that you survived, and burdened by your losses.

Because surviving was big, but the loss was too.

Some time ago, you didn’t want to be here. You said it, out loud for the first time. You didn’t eat for days. You stopped taking insulin. You didn’t know you could make it, or if facing whatever was on the other side of this was worth making it.

You wanted to stick your head in a hole because your whole life fell apart in front of your face, and you had no power to do anything about it except get through it. Because what else are you gonna do when people die, or relationships end, or marriages end? You just move on? Because you’re still here, and you have to.

The countless hours of staring and walls and bursting into tears, that’s OK. Typing two words in an email, and then collapsing because your whole body was exhausted? That’s OK. Muting yourself, and turning off your camera during zoom calls to cry? That’s OK. Putting your Mom’s mini urn in your purse when you don’t want to take a trip alone? Weird, but OK.

Making space for grief isn’t an easy task. Emotional pain, mental blocks, and physical hurt are something that no one can ever prepare you for.

And even when you experience it, it feels different every single time.

This year, you experienced grief and loss in ways you could not imagine. Two felt like death, and one was.

But through it all, you lived more than you ever had. You created a beautiful life after the storm. Your friends helped you keep the doors on the house.

And somehow, you made it.

The grief of a lost marriage is filled with closer friendships, stronger bonds, and so much love.

The grief of losing your Mom but then re-connecting with your Dad(s) and your siblings…all of the people you care about – uplifting.

But the grief of never putting up a Christmas tree with your mom again, or never getting her midnight birthday call again will always sting when those times come back around.

Her random Costco dropoffs at your house, or deep conversations on the bed with tea. The way her office door would squeak when she opened it to say hi. Those are the memories that can keep you warm.

You are surrounded by her love, and her whimsy. She is always watching down on you (and sending little signs like yellow flowers in the most surprising places, and butterflies when you least expect them).

You got through this year because you’re YOU. And all that you can do is keep on going.

Because imagine what’s going to happen when you’re at your full potential, and not burdened with grief and loss.

You are you…so it’s hard to imagine it won’t be awesome.

About Mila

Hi! I'm Mila.

I’m earning my Master’s degree in Applied nutrition.

I’m currently an Integrative Nutrition Health Coach living with  LADA (Latent Autoimmune Diabetes in Adults, a slow-progressing form of autoimmune Type 1 diabetes) I love food, travel, and my kitchen, and teaching you about diabetes self-management.

I’m here to help you live your best life possible diabetes by showing you how to create simple, blood-sugar friendly and delicious meals and tips on diabetes self-care.

Be sure to download my FREE Diabetes Community App Glucose Guide, or reach out for FREE 1:1 diabetes health and habit coaching.

How can I help with your diabetes management?

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