Surviving loss is one of the most difficult challenges we may face. There are no words to take away the pain and it can feel so isolating as people around us begin to go on with their lives. It may feel as though no one sees or understands how lost we feel.
Many of us will know the pain of loss in our lives and will take the time to grieve, mourn our loss, and learn to live life again over time. Sometimes there may be circumstances that are especially difficult to recover from and moving forward in life becomes more difficult.
Whatever your grief journey looks like, it is important to take care of yourself. Surround yourself with supportive people, pay attention to your nutrition, get good exercise and rest and take gentle care of yourself.
Normal Grief Reactions
Feelings & Emotional Reactions:
Sadness, disbelief, longing, numbness, shock, relief, anger, confusion, disorganization, inability to concentrate, feeling anxious, irritability, depression, frustration at loss of control, helplessness, loneliness
Physical & Behavioral Reactions:
Crying, tightness in chest or throat, weight in chest, changes in appetite, changes in sleep pattern, deep sighing, chills, hyperactivity, incessant talking about the deceased and circumstances of death, avoidance of talk about the deceased, restlessness, searching, lack of energy and motivation, pit in stomach
Complicated Grief Reactions
Depression, substance abuse, difficulty coping with loss, prolonged distress long after loss has occurred, unusual sleep pattern that does not resolve, repetitive, disturbing thoughts or memories, unrelenting guilt or anger , and long term difficulty with daily living.
Some misconceptions of Grief and Loss:
*Time heals all wounds * Crying means I’m weak * Grief should last about a year *
*Don’t talk about grief. It is too painful *