Emotional hibernation

charles coke
Charles coke

There are times when I go into emotional hibernation. The length of this hibernation changes but the intensity is pretty consistent–sort of an undercurrent of heaviness.

I’ve realized this will never go away. The month of April is one of those times because Charles was born in April.

The holidays are another time I huddle up in emotional hibernation, sort of immobilized, indecisive, unfocused and unmotivated.  I do talk. But I don’t really want to. I go out. But it’s forced.

I’ve come to realize there will always be these moments–my time to grieve my boy. To love my child. Remember him and be unapologetically sad and dull. I’m allowed.

Emotional hibernation is curling up with grief. It’s embracing it and allowing it in.

Then it’s about allowing it to leave without feeling guilty.

It does lift. The clouds do part. I do wake up. I do live again.

Published by

AnneMoss Rogers

AnneMoss Rogers is a mental health and suicide education expert, mental health speaker, suicide prevention trainer and consultant. She is author of the Book, Diary of a Broken Mind and co-author of Emotionally Naked: A Teacher's Guide to Preventing Suicide and Recognizing Students at Risk with Kim O'Brien PhD, LICSW. She raised two boys, Richard and Charles, and lost her younger son, Charles to addiction and suicide on June 5, 2015. She is a motivational speaker who empowers by educating and provides life saving strategies and emotionally healthy coping skills. As talented and funny as Charles was, letting other people know they matter was his greatest gift. And now that's the legacy she carries forward in her son's memory. Mental Health Speakers Website.

9 thoughts on “Emotional hibernation”

  1. I think I’m in one now and I’m angry that this has become my new life.
    I’m still in the first year and the reality of this every day seems like a heaviness that weighs in on me.
    I wonder how long from it being almost every day to just “seasons”.
    I think I have come to realize the first year and all the first anniversaries of everything are going to be like this… It just rolls from one to the next and there’s all these other little bumps in the road along the way.
    I read that last line to myself with the same voice as Eeyore in Winnie the Pooh. And that’s exactly what it feels like.
    Someone commented very recently that they think I’m stuck… I don’t know what else would be normal right now.
    I’ll just hang on to hope and the experience of others that this will lessen. If I let myself admit it, I can see some little changes from six to seven months ago. That’s a start I guess.

    Thank you Anne for writing this blog and allowing me to express my feelings and my experience without guilt.

    1. I felt stuck along the way too. There are these waves of grief that last a long time in the first two years. I think you are weathering it very much like the rest of us. I would be more concerned if you were not expressing your feelings or drinking s lot instead. The feelings that come with complicated grief are normal reactions to losing someone you love. The more you love them the more it hurts. It just sucks. If you get to two years and you are not able to enjoy coffee or a movie with friends it could be that you’d need more help to get “unstuck.” Even that is “normal” for what seven been through. But it’s still very raw. I am grateful to have met you, Jayne.

  2. This is John Frederick Rickard Bauder, I was at one time a student at Virginia Treatment Center For Children and Charles and I were friends for about 8 Months to a year until I left Virginia Treatment Center For Children in Richmond, Virginia I just found out about his passing and I want to be reached at johnbauder362@gmail.com and johnbauder362@facebook.com I never knew he had gotten worse and I am shocked to find out that he passed two years ago I never knew until I went on my Face book Page and started looking for my past friends and yes I am still alive and has Ms. Perkins retired by now I wander ? Ms. Perkins made a tremendous impact in my life when I went to School there with Charles and he didn’t let too many people call him Charlie I have missed Charles for a long time and I am sorry to hear about his passing My heart goes out to you Charles and God Bless you and you’re suffering Family’s

  3. I do too Anne Moss. My therapist calls mine a “grief season” – when there are many trigger dates one after the other. For me, it starts in late September near my birthday and then a week later is Whitten’s, and then it just steamrolls, with date after date until the funeral date on December 27. Then you are right – around New Year’s the clouds part and I’m clearer again. Until Mother’s Day….. You are not alone in this hideous cycle.

  4. I’ve referred to it as taking a little extra care of my hurting heart, same thing I think, and I am starting to realize that there will be obvious times (Birthday, Anniversary etc) but still can’t predict the unpredictable things that seem to set off a period of emotional hibernation. 💙

  5. Anne Moss, you are living out the grieving process so beautifully and are such an encouragement to others grieving. Thank you for sharing your truth with us. ❤️

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