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|Posted on 5 December, 2019 at 15:10|
Grief is love. A reluctance to let go. Grief is the last act of love we give to those who have passed. Coping with the loss of someone or something you love is one of life's biggest challenges. Often, the pain of loss can feel too much. Overwhelming. Causing a huge amount of emotional distress. Shock, anger, depression, confusion - to name just a few. (Elizabeth Kubler Ross created a helpful formula covering the stages of grief, however it is important to remember there is no right or wrong way to grief, contrary to what people may say, each person grieves differently) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kübler-Ross_model Grief is like the ocean, enormous. Changeable. It comes in waves, ebbing and flowing, sometimes it is calm, gentle almost peaceful, other times it is overwhelming, strong and aggressive. These are the times it totally knocks you off your feet, taking the wind from your sails. The enormously of the loss weighting down. That heavy feeling right in the pit of the stomach. We sink. Other days, it is almost manageable, life continues on, we get caught up in everyday life, the grief almost fleeting. A gentle wave when we are remember. We tread water. Working to keep our head above water. Inertia, but we get through, the day passes. And much like the waves in the ocean, grief too is temporary. But can we ever really learn to swim in our grief? Move on from our loved ones? I'm not so sure, however, I do know we can move forward in our grief, we can learn to live with our grief, allowing it to become part of our daily lives. We adapt, we rebuild and we can eventually recover from that loss. Don't get me wrong, the loss stays under the surface of our lives, it will continue to permeate long after our loved one has passed but with reconstruction we can work through that loss, eventually meeting acceptance, and finally meeting hope. Hope for the future. If you are struggling with grief, it is important to take extra care of yourself, healing takes time, it takes patience. There is no timeline for grief. Grief is not one emotion, it is an experience - a process. Do not compare your grief to those around you, each persons experience is different. It may be a very private affair, a lonely journey. However, do remind yourself you are not alone. Here are some protective factors to help you along this journey. Take time and care. Do not try to do everything at once set small targets that you can easily achieve. Build on that. Seek and Accept Support: Talk through your feelings with friends of family. You cannot travel this path alone. You need the support and care of others. If friends or family are unavailable seek professional support. Spend time with people. Grief may be so intense that you just want to withdraw or isolate yourself; take time for yourself, yes, however, lean on those around you. Get Involved in Something. Volunteer or set a project. Getting involved in work or some other activity you enjoy can keep you focused and offer a welcome distraction from your grief. If that activity is especially meaningful or helpful to others, you might find it also raises your spirits, strengthen your sense of purpose. Implore lifestyle changes. Greif can at times feel like we are out of control. Take your control back where you can. Eat well, gentle exercise, mediation and make time for self care. Making healthy changes will also massively improve your wellbeing at this difficult time. Pace yourself. Grief is exhausting. It takes a lot of energy to feel so intensely so often. Allow yourself plenty of time to do everyday tasks and don't over-schedule yourself. Take your rest when you need to and offer yourself some kindness allowing yourself grace. It is important to listen to your body asking yourself what you need that day? Each day will vary. Treat yourself well do, what it takes to manage that day. Keep the faith. Remember that intensity of grief doesn't last forever. Things will get better. Hold on. ** If you feel you are unable to cope and feelings persist, do contact your GP, a medical professional, counsellor or seek support from a local grief support group** See below for 24 hour Crisis & free bereavement counselling. https://www.cruse.org.uk/get-help/about-grief https://www.lifelinehelpline. https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/stress-anxiety-depression/coping-with-bereavement/