Monday’s Musings – The Emotional Roller Coaster

As I’m learning to live my new normal without my mom and father-in-law, I’ve realized I don’t need to do this alone.

One step my husband and I've taken is to join a Grief Share class at our church. We're with others who are in differing stages of grief. Most of them have been on this road longer than we have. There’s a lot we can learn from them about dealing with this emotional roller coaster we've found ourselves on.

We watch a video each week. Boy, does that help. Again, the people who are speaking have all suffered losses. They talk to us where we are and give us hope that things will get easier with time.

The classes have really helped me understand my situation better and I hope it will help you, too.

Remember that while my grief is very obvious, you may be grieving losses without realizing it. Grieving the loss of a friend who moved, a lost job, a lost opportunity. Maybe health issues or a lost dream. Ailing parents. It can come in many forms.

But one of the interesting things from this past week was when they talked about the roller coaster of emotions and the emotional ball of feelings that we go through. 

First off, you know how fun/scary a roller coaster ride can be? It truly is a great analogy to grieving. You can experience excitement and fear simultaneously. Or be nauseous. You can lose your keys. You want to scream and laugh at the same time.

This is just like grief.

We can have very conflicting emotions at the same time. Sadness and relief. Acceptance and denial. The list is long.

This is where the emotional ball of yarn comes from. Our emotions get so tangled up with each other - like a ball of yarn. We rarely feel just one emotion at a time. And we often feel conflicting emotions.

And that’s tiring.

Very tiring.

I was relieved to learn this.

Why? Because I can go from happy to sad so quickly. My emotions make me feel like I’m on a roller coaster. I can be fine one minute, then triggered to sadness by a fleeting memory a moment later.

But I’ve just learned that’s okay.

And it gives me a new perspective.

This emotional ball of feelings is normal. And, now that I’m aware of it, it seems less intimidating.

I can’t stop the emotions. But understanding can help me not stress over them as much.

And it gives me hope. Hope that it won’t always be this hard.

That we will make it through this tough season of life.

Hope that joy will come in the morning.
And for that, I’m grateful.

Praying for blessings for you today.


Psalms 30:5   "...Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning."


  1. I'm glad you're in GriefShare and that it's helpful for you. The rollercoaster of emotions can be confusing, but it sounds like you're learning to live with it. "An emotional ball of yarn" What a great way to put it.

    It will get better. A little at a time.

    1. Thanks Ellen! It's always good to hear it will get better. I know this is a long road, but it's one I have to travel. And trust God with. :)

  2. Hi there. I was on the MBT site last night. I am looking at sites! I am so sorry you are walking this long road of grief. I have traveled it, and feel like I have worn a path as we have lost all 4 parents and we are not that old. 40s. May the memories sustain you and comfort you until you see them again. His comfort comes at the right time. It may be a sunrise or a memory called to mind by one of our children. Pictures are treasures! Blessings to you. Gail Helgeson

    1. Hi Gail! Thanks for dropping by. And for the words of encouragement. :) We're in our forties as well. Losing his dad and my mom two weeks apart was devastating. It has definitely complicated the grieving process.

      It is comforting to know that others, like you, have made it through. Thanks again for dropping by.

      PS I stopped by your site. I wanted to leave a comment but it kept telling me there was a problem. Just thought you might want to know. :)

  3. Wow! What an awesome post Mary. As someone who lost an identical twin sister and a brother over a 3 year period I know these experiences so well. Thanks for sharing what you garnered from being in the Church group. It has certainly helped me too.