No one finds it easy
Death is part of our life, facing the loss of someone we love is never easy. We all know that people have to die, but we prefer not to think about it until we have to face the reality of someone close to us having a serious illness. A death may be sudden and unexpected, leaving us totally unprepared. There may, however, be a warning. There may be time to make some adjustments, but the grief which follows is no less painful. We are left feeling numb and believing that our lives have lost their direction and purpose.
Sorrow and grief are deeply painful, and no one can really prepare us for them. We feel that no one else can understand how much we hurt inside. But the pain and the sorrow are the price we pay for loving, and the love goes on even though death has intervened.
The grieving process
Grief is not a single event. It is a process which takes time to work through, during which we find out how to adapt to our loss.
There is no right or wrong way to grieve.
Our feelings of grief are as personal and individual as any other feelings.
Grief brings feelings to the surface; crying helps us to express our emotions freely and openly and can be very helpful and healing.
The strong feelings we have had for our loved ones remain and give rise to our sorrow, which is natural.
The sorts of feelings people have do not follow any consistent pattern, but usually include some of the following; they can appear at any time and in any order. Perhaps you began by feeling numb, unable to accept the reality of the loss, wanting to cry but not being able to. Perhaps you could not believe it could happen to you. Or you may have had the opposite reaction, weeping at the slightest provocation and crying yourself to sleep at night. You will almost certainly ache inside, and feel nothing can be the same again. You may feel you cannot go out on your own and feel afraid of meeting new people or of answering the telephone, or you may just want to sit and look at photographs.
You may even feel as if your loved one is going to walk through the door at any moment, and find yourself making plans as if they were still here with you.
Maybe you keep asking ‘why’? Feeling angry about a life cut short and being denied time together, or even blaming yourself for something done or left undone. All these things are normal and usual.
The pain and sorrow are the price we pay for loving.
When these feelings come over you, you may feel dreadfully alone and without help. Even if you have a strong faith, you may not find it a comfort at this time. All of these feelings are not only natural, but common in grief.
Bereavement is one of the hardest things to have to cope with. That you feel ill, off-balance, unable to sleep at night and fearful of the future is hardly surprising when you are faced with what is possibly the biggest change you have ever had to deal with.