Endings are sad.

It doesn’t really matter how ecstatic I am to move on to another job, or city, or school. There’s always something remarkably sad about moving on. Growing up. Expanding out.

One of the topics I have covered extensively throughout my year and a half of grad school has been grief. Often, we think of grief as something monumental, groundbreaking. The death of a loved one. The tragedy of a natural disaster. Parents divorcing. Breakups. The loss of love, of life.

But often, grief can come in the little moments. In the child no longer believing in the tooth fairy. In the treatment of a mental disorder. In losing a small but cherished keepsake. In ending a phase in your life.

I love blogging. I love sharing my mental health struggles with those who need it. I hope to inspire those who struggle to keep going. To reach out for help. One of my favorite parts of blogging has been reaching those who were suffering in silence. It’s been gratifying. Not to mention someone therapeutic for me, in a selfish way.

As I continue my journey toward becoming a mental health clinician, I have been wrestling with how blogging fits into my life. Self-disclosure is a highly debated part of being a therapist, and I have spent long hours trying to discern how much of myself I want my clients to know. And for now, I think the amount is minimal. So, for the time being, I need to stop blogging.

And I’m really sad about it.

But that’s the thing about grief—it’s important. It allows for closure. It’s painful, but it’s painful in the way that stitches are painful. It promotes healing and new growth. And it very rarely lasts forever.

Right now, I don’t know if the grief has fully hit me yet. It certainly has made its presence known more as I have been writing this. I’ll probably grieve more next month as I watch my talented co-bloggers release their beautiful, inspiring pieces. And that’s okay. I can hold that grief rather than become debilitated by it.

Who knows if I’ll blog again. Maybe. But that’s further down the road, for sure.

So to close, I want to say thank you. Thank you to this extraordinary community, to our fearless leader, to everyone who has done me the honor of reading the words I publish on the internet. I appreciate you all beyond measure.

 Until we meet again: stay strong, friends. 

Kristy Cloetingh is a Philadelphia native who is currently trying to figure out her place in the world. Her passions include reading, singing, dancing, nature, yoga, chicken fingers, and puppies. An anorexia survivor and mental health warrior, Kristy has made it her life’s mission to remind every single person that their bodies and minds are worthy of unconditional love and respect, regardless of size, shape, or whatever “normal” is.

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