GRIEF IS A NECESSITY & A PRIVILEGE

Posted on August 8th, 2012

GRIEF IS BOTH A NECESSITY AND A PRIVILEGE. IT COMES AS A RESULT OF HAVING THE CAPACITY TO GIVE AND RECEIVE LOVE.

BECAUSE WE ALL WILL EVENTUALLY DIE, WE WILL ALL AT SOME POINT EXPERIENCE THE LOSS OF A LOVED ONE.


COMMON QUESTIONS After the loss of a loved one

How do I survive, and do I even want to?

How long will this pain last?  Is what I’m feeling normal?

Should I act as if everything is okay?

Should I make changes in my holiday traditions?

There are no  right or wrong answers, no simple guidelines that will take away the pain and the hurt people feel.

Some suggestions:

1.  TALK ABOUT YOUR GRIEF—ignoring it won’t make it go away—share with people who you find caring and non-judgmental
WHAT PEOPLE FEEL ONE DAY WILL NOT BE THE SAME AS THEY FEEL THE NEXT DAY OR THE NEXT WEEK. FEELINGS CHANGE AS WE WORK THROUGH OUR GRIEF

2. BE TOLERANT OF YOUR LIMITS and kind to yourself.  It’s not uncommon to have low energy—mourning depletes us of our resources, it is exhausting/hard work.--  inability to concentrate, feeling vulnerable—emotions on the surface.  EXERCISES helps reduce the stress.

TRY NOT TO WORRY ABOUT WHAT OTHERS THINK about how you’re handling grief
They’re not in your place. Some may want to cheer you up and give you advice and others might want you to hurry up.


3.  SIMPLIFY—be realistic about your self expectations, focus on what’s really important – you and your family. PACE yourself, ALLOW extra time to do errands . BREAK TASKS  down to manageable pieces

4. BE WITH SUPPORTIVE, COMFORTING PEOPLE. People that allow you to talk openly about your feelings

5. ACCEPT HELP- OTHERS CAN OFTEN SEE WHAT WE CANNOT SEE, CAN DO WHAT WE CAN’T DO, CAN LISTEN AS WE PROCESS OUR FEELING—GRIEF SUPPORT GROUPS AND GRIEF COUNSELING ARE HELPFUL.

6.  MENTION THE NAME OF THE PERSON WHO DIED, others might avoid using the name for fear of upsetting a person, take the initiative—others will then recognize your need to remember if you give them permission.  IT’S NORMAL TO REPEAT THE SAME STORIES ABOUT OUR LOVED ONE AND THE EVENTS AROUND THE DEATH.  That’s part of the process

7. DO WHAT’S RIGHT FOR YOU, have a plan. GIVE YOURSELF PERMISSIOM TO CHANGE YOUR FAMILY AND HOLIDAY TRADITIONS.

8. EMBRACE YOUR MEMORIES—your memories are the legacy left by your loved ones, people are now setting about the task of remembering the person who they will carry with them for the rest of their lives.

ONE THING THAT I FOUND COMFORTING WAS TO CARRY, WEAR OR USE AN OBJECT THAT BELONGED TO MY LOVE DONE.

9. RENEW YOUR RESOURCES FOR LIVING. Taking inventory of our lives and our strengths, we just might discover some new gifts in ourselves, some untapped resources—even as we acknowledge  the depth of our pain.

Might consider reaching out to others—volunteer work can help us feel needed, appreciated and valued.

10.  EXPLORE YOUR FAITH—read some material about grief and loss, set some time aside for prayer and reflection, some time to explore your beliefs. Perhaps, make an appointment to talk to a pastor, rabbi, spiritual advisor. BE PREPARED FOR THE POSSIBILITY OF EXPERIENCING SERIOUS DOUBT AND EVEN ANGER WITH GOD. THIS IS COMMON. 

QUESTIONS AND DOUBTS ARE OKAY—THEY ARE PART OF THE GRIEF JOURNEY—BE WITH PEOPLE WHO CAN SUPPORT YOU IN THIS.

ALMOST ALL PEOPLE WHO GO THROUGH A MAJOR LOSS RECOVER, BUT IT TAKES TIME, LOTS OF TIME AND IT TAKES A LOT OF ENERGY AND EFFORT, AND IT’S PAINFUL. 

YET IT IS THROUGH THIS VALLEY OF PAIN THAT WE ARE HEALED AND BEGIN TO FEEL GOOD AGAIN.

AS THEY SAY, THE ONLY WAY THROUGH IT IS THROUGH IT.

LOVE DOESN’T DIE, IT DEEPENS US AND ULTIMATELY WE ARE STRENGTHENED BY IT.

YOU KNOW WHAT THEY SAY ABOUT SCAR TISSUE—IT IS TOUGHER THAN NORMAL SKIN. WE WILL BECOME STRONG AGAIN, AND HOPEFULLY STRONGER THAN WE WERE BEFORE.


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