“What is happening to me?…”
Grief is a journey, often lonely, almost always confusing and disorienting…Though many of us feel that we face this journey alone, we are not alone in the many phases of the process. Discovering the answers as to what is happening can help us find the path that works best for each of us. Grief is often referred to as, “something that happens to us…” after the loss of a loved one. The deep sorrow and feelings of helplessness and hopelessness that we feel following that loss, happens to most of us. These feelings are familiar because they are similar feelings that we experience due to other losses in our lives. Losses of a job, a marriage, a relationship or similar circumstances can develop that same sense of loss. Obviously, the degree and depth of the loss that we experience is greater following death. The funeral is the first step in the journey of the process of grieving the loss.
Knowing that grief covers so many kinds of losses, it is important to recognize that there isn’t a single definition or solution to understanding the emotions. In its basic form, it is the normal and natural response to loss or change of any kind. In and of itself, grief is not a disorder of one’s personality. It is not a pathological condition. In our grief we experience conflicting emotions caused by the end or loss of familiar patterns of behavior. Often that loss forces us to accept and adapt to a new reality. Suddenly, there is an abrupt change in our former patterns of comfortable and established behaviors. There is of course a deep longing for that which we have lost. We struggle with the resultant void that we face every day.
There are conflicting emotions that sometimes create obstacles in our recovery. Conflicts can sometimes occur when an elderly parent passes away following a lengthy illness. We are faced with emotions of both sadness and relief. How we deal with this conflict will impact our process of developing a healthy path to recovery. The conflicts are sometimes based upon deeper and more long-standing emotions. The process is often complicated further by multi-layered and unresolved conflicting emotions.
It is important to recognize that grief is both universal and personal. The individual experience is varied and it is simultaneously influenced by the nature of the loss, as well as the timing of the event. All of the components that makes each of us a unique individual will also affect our individual loss. It is helpful to recognize the understanding that men and women might process grief differently. It is important to recognize how an individual may cope with problem solving or facing challenges. These observations are helpful as we begin to understand the varied response and coping mechanisms available to us.
Visit our website for resources available to you as you face your journey of grief, loss and recovery. You are not alone on this path. We are available for your questions and concerns. Please call if you are experiencing difficulty in understanding, processing or developing a comprehensive plan in your journey. Our Aftercare Facilitator will be honored to speak with you and offer direction and suggestions for your path.
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