Here are 5 things I have learned about grief –
- Grief doesn’t have a timeline. Grief doesn’t have an expiration date. We cannot calculate how long our grief will last. We don’t “get over” grief in 6 months or a year. We will always grieve the loss of our loved one.
- A grief journey is not a step by step process. You don’t finish one stage of grief to move on to the next. I ran across this Ted Talk from Nora McInerny. With honesty and humor, she tells her own story of grief. Why we don’t move on from our grief; we move forward with it. Here is a link to her Ted Talk
- If your relationship with the deceased person was difficult, your grief might be more complicated. Because of complicated grief, you might struggle for longer periods of time or have trouble returning to your daily life activities. If this sounds like you, you may consider talking to licensed mental health professional. If your loved one was a client of CPS, you can work with one of our mental health partners. Contact us at 419-423-0286 to find out more information on our emotional support services.
- You can talk about your loved one. Don’t feel guilty if you want to share memories or stories about them. “We talk about them not because we’re stuck or because we haven’t moved on, but we talk about them because we are theirs, and they are ours, and no passage of time will ever change that.” - Shivi Jasrotia. You may have friends or family that feel awkward or uncomfortable around you because of your grief. You are not responsible for others’ feelings. Your grief is your own.
- You can create a meaningful life while grieving. Grieving someone and moving forward with your life is not an either/or situation. You can do both – often simultaneously. I chose another career path after I lost my husband to cancer. Working with cancer patients and their families is the most fulfilling career I have ever had. I would have never considered working for Cancer Patient Services before I lost my husband. Working at Cancer Patient Services is an integral part of my grief journey.
Grief is hard. Grief is messy. Grief makes people uncomfortable. However, you can move forward with your grief. You can find meaning after the loss of a loved one. You can rediscover joy in your life.
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