At the core of this blog, I hope to always provide hope and inspiration to anyone who is grieving. Our society continues to be uncomfortable with a situation which all of us will eventually encounter which is the death of a loved one. So for today, this post is for my friend and for anyone who may be grieving (and I want to add this can include losses other than death – loss of a job, loss of good health, loss of a dream).
There is no right or wrong way to grieve – simply healthy and unhealthy ways of coping. No two individuals will grieve the same way and family members will each respond differently to a loss. It does not mean one is not “grieving correctly.” Understanding the typical responses to grief can be helpful.
Grief is Physical
- Difficulty sleeping (problems getting to sleep, staying asleep or sleeping too much)
- More illness than usual as your immune system is weakened from stress
- Appetite changes (no appetite or too much)
- Difficulty breathing – check to see if you are holding your breath. This can occur as you are overly anxious from what you have experienced.
Grief is Emotional
- Crying, feeling sad,
- Feeling angry (at anyone, your loved one for dying, others for being alive, God)
- Feeling anxious (expecting something else to happen)
- Worrying about other family members and loved ones
- At first you may find yourself constantly thinking about your loved one who has died and asking “What if”. Replaying events with different approaches is our mind’s way of hoping to have control over a situation where there was no control.
Grief is Spiritual
- Question if there is a God
- Be angry at God
- Be unable to return to church (church can be a very emotional place after a death)
- You may begin to explore other realms of spirituality and find comfort in different view points. (I have found this to often be very true for many individuals)
Grief is Social
- You may have multiple offers to stay busy and attend events. You may or may not feel like being around others for some time after a death.
- Your personal space may change and you find it difficult to be around large crowds
- Support may often come from places you least expected. Many people find that their closest friends do not know how to support them while acquaintances become strong support systems in grief.
Grief Has No Timeline