Grief, it is hard to put into words what it is. Experiencing loss is one of life’s hardest challenges and processes. When we lose someone important to us, we also lose a part of ourselves, which is a natural feeling that comes with grief. We can feel sorrow for someone we have never met as well as our animal family members.
It can affect you in many ways including emotionally and physically, it is unpredictable and comes in waves which can make managing your grief a struggle. Everyone experiences grief differently. Physically you may feel tired with no energy, problems eating, headaches, chest pain, and your body could feel sore. Emotional symptoms may include irritability, detachment, guilt, fear, anxiety, and more. It is essential to allow yourself to feel these emotions
There is no one way or right way to cope and deal with grief. There is no quick fix. Please be patient with yourself. Here are a few things that I found helpful during my times of grieving.
With the range of emotions, you will go through and feel, allow yourself to cry. It is a good release, and you do feel better after letting it out.
If you find that you are struggling with letting out whatever you are feeling, I found writing a letter to who you lost helpful. In the letter, I said my goodbye, things I never said but wished I did, and anything else that came to mind. If writing is not your forte then drawing, painting, music, or how you express yourself.
It is ok to take time away and take care of yourself. Take a warm bath, a walk, read a book, something that can put your mind on taking care of yourself.
As hard as it will be, try to keep some routine going, a bit of normality. Even if it is something like getting up at the same time every day. One thing to realize is that what normal was before the loss will not return. You will discover a new normal, but it takes time.
This is a hard one. Be ready for holidays, special occasions, and events that come up. It is tough to go through these moments that you are used to spending with that person. Find what works for you. Personally, each year on my father’s birthday I get a cupcake with a single candle to blow out and wish him a happy birthday.
There is no shame with getting help to deal with your grief. If it means meeting with a friend or family member to talk, or if you need to see a therapist. Do what you need to.
Remember, they are with you, in your heart and memories.
Until next time, I want to leave you with this poem.
“When I Think of Death” by Maya Angelou
When I think of death, and of late the idea has come with alarming frequency, I seem at peace with the idea that a day will dawn when I will no longer be among those living in this valley of strange humours.
I can accept the idea of my own demise, but I am unable to accept the death of anyone else.
I find it impossible to let a friend or relative go into that country of no return.
Disbelief becomes my dose of companion, and anger follows in its wake.
I answer the heroic question “Death, where is thy sting!” with “it is here in my heart and mind and memories.”
Until next time,