Grief follows its own timeline. Although there are some things that are universal in grief, such as the stages of grief (tomorrow’s post) and the year of firsts, when it comes to the process of grief, it is a very individual process. Grief needs to infiltrate our very cells, it needs to integrate loss into the experience of having loved.
The anniversary of our loved one’s death is a tough one. Very often, in the weeks preceding that day, we begin to feel more weepy, we have increased sensitivity, we report feeling on edge; sometimes to the point where we may feel that we have taken some steps back in our grief. I would advise that in grief, there are no steps back. Rather, it is the non-linear process of grief that we experience; it is simply grief’s way of reminding us of our loss and therefore our love.
It becomes important to recognize that day in two ways. The first is to come up with a way to honour our loved one; it can be a visit to the grave site, releasing balloons with prayers inside, gathering as a family at their favourite restaurant, creating a memory jar and so forth. Doing something along these lines will help us to integrate experience and feeling. The second important task for that day is self-care. If you need to be with your family that day, take the day off work. If you need to have the morning to yourself so that you can cry as much as you want, do that. If you need to feed your comfort system with a bath and by cooking your favourite meal, then that is okay too.
By honouring both our loved one and ourselves, we allow grief its due course; continuing our journey towards the assimilation of loss and love.
Photo credit: http://Photo by Fabrice Nerfin on Unsplash
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