Life has a beginning, and an end, we know this, but who wants to think about it. We all have to leave at some point, as sad as that is. Leave behind our friends and loved ones.
How do they cope with this.
There are various models that have studied the way we feel, or how we cope with a loved ones passing. This applies to friends too, because they are loved ones as well.
The stages of grief.
There are in some models more stages, the simplest is five. Everyone will deal with them differently too, some linger on each stage more, some jump back and forth, or deal with two or more stages at the same time.
So why analyze this?
Because it does help to know what you feel, is normal, or felt by others, what you can expect… and when concerns should surface for lingering too long in one area.
1) SHOCK, DENIAL. Shock is normal, we are surprised, even if we are expecting it… somewhat. We are overwhelmed with emotions. So we deny it, this buffers those emotions. It helps us deal with the first wave of pain we experience.
2) ANGER This could be directed at our loved one, for leaving us, causing us pain, anguish, though we know it is not their fault. It could be directed at friends, family members.. objects, the doctor that couldn’t preform a miracle… God….
3) GUILT or BARGAINING. We didn’t say I love you, visit often enough, should have been nicer to them.. seek medical attention sooner… the last conversations was not our best.. we may have said something we now regret.
4) DEPRESSION. The sadness settles in, the regrets at what they will miss.. what we will miss.
5) ACCEPTANCE We don’t always reach this stage. It doesn’t mean we are happy now, back to normal… only that we have moved on somewhat. We are not now OK with our loss. We never will be. We slowly move on, trying to enjoy life again. As our departed one would want. We have more good days than bad days. But we remember. We try not to feel bad about going on.
Grief is a personal thing, you will deal with it in your own way, at your own time. It is unique, just as you are. You may jump back and forth on the stages, and meld them. It isn’t science, you may experience other stages as well.
Coping with loss is a very deep experience, one that is personal. You will go through many emotions, no one can help you make it easy, or understand what you are going through. Try not to bottle it up, it is normal, let it out… heal
How to cope?
Don’t hold your feelings in, talk about them, with friends, family. It isn’t a taboo you know. They are still with you in your hearts, don’t hide them away.
Enlarge a favorite photograph and frame it, or build a scrap book of memories. Or do this for someone that is sharing your loss, perhaps make one for each of you. Share some tears… some memories.. grow from it.
Writing is a great tool, write a journal/blog/log or diary. Write of things you did, remember or what you are doing now. Write them a letter. Don’t hold back, let it all out. If you are angry, tell them. Share something happy that you wish they could see.
There are many more things to ease or comfort you. But move on, it is what they would want. Try not to feel guilt at experiencing a laugh, or enjoying a meal or movie… a book or playing cards.
Anniversaries are hard, those dates in time. They haunt, try to spend them with friends or family members that are sharing the loss too.
Don’t be afraid of hugs, or the emotions they may stir.
Try not to withdraw. And take care of yourself, eat properly. If you are now alone this is something that is so hard to do. But you must, they would want you to.
I am sorry if you are reading this now, because you have just lost someone. *soft hugs* Be strong please. Try a little smile, remember them. You can speak to them in your head, feel them there. Let them go.. but not completely, keep their memories, their love.