Remember how I said that it doesn’t matter how far away you go, you still run into people or situations that emotionally bring you back to your past? I experienced this firsthand.

I would drive into town and see a little blonde child walking down the sidewalk with an older sister. The overwhelming pain would come rushing back into my broken heart.

What could I do?

I went back to my first step and reminded myself I had a choice. I could run from the pain or I could face the pain. I might feel some immediate relief if I denied the hurt, but it didn’t take long before another situation would pop up and I would be faced with that wrenching pain again.

But here is what I found to be most helpful: I named the emotion I was feeling. I asked myself, What is my emotional pain about at this moment?

Step 2. Name the emotion.