When a loved one leaves this life, it can be a shock, a relief, or can be the loss of the dream of a better relationship or connection or a combination of all and so much more. Sometimes there are many “if only I had” playing through our minds over and over.
Probably one of the most confusing things about it all is that many of us do not really know what to do with all the feelings (or lack thereof) this period of time brings us.
Many times grieving people have shared with me that they feel “crazy” or in a “fog” or have a sense of “unreality.” Often it seems that the rest of the world shouldn’t just be going about business as usual when this is all going on for us.
Sometimes we see someone who reminds us of that loved one and we are startled at the fresh pain it brings. Other times we have the “playback” or “rewind” experience of going through the whole experience as if we are in a dream or it can happen during an actual dream.
In any case, many express that they would like to have their “old selves” back again. Often we think we’d love to share a happy piece of information with them only to realize AGAIN that we cannot call them anymore.
I personally often wished I could at least phone heaven and see how they are doing.
I found it was very common for other people to act very uncomfortable when they saw me. In our culture in American, it seems as though we are expected to be “over it” within days or at least within a few months to a year. Almost seems there is a general belief that if grief is lingering any longer than that, there is something wrong.
The good news is that while some of our friends shy away from the discomfort often others who have also experienced grief first hand will come forward and be very supportive, empathic and comforting because they know how it is.
Some of us want to talk about it all or at least know that others are also remembering our loved one, others do not want to talk about it at all and just want it to be a private matter within themselves.
Each one of us grieves differently and we cannot and should not try to measure our or others pain. It all just not only hurts, but can be excruciating for a time. Later, hopefully we can look back on some great memories and be thankful we had them while we did.
Again, this is a big subject and there is so much for us to learn from one another.
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