loss and grief..
Loss can be experienced in many forms. The most obvious one is though the loss of someone we love whether it be recent or many years ago. However, loss can also be experienced in losing our health, through a diagnosis which can change our life - we lose the way life used to be and have to adjust to a new way of living. Or a redundancy - we suddenly lose our sense of who we were in our role - we can feel an intense grief. Perhaps retirement is looming and we cannot seem to accept it - we feel overwhelmed with grief and sadness at what the future holds and what it means not to be working - we've lost meaning and purpose in our lives and feel utterly lost.
These losses can also re-activate old losses from the past which we may not have grieved properly and so we can feel the full force of several losses.
grief through the death of someone we love..
When we lose someone important to us though death, it can shake our very foundation. We can be left feeling numb, shocked and unable to function as we did before. The meaning of our life can seem to have vanished leaving us feeling empty, unreal and completely lost.
Bereavement is the time we spend adjusting to our loss. There is no right or wrong way to cope with this devastating time, everyone will cope with it in their own way and although normal, grief can manifest itself in unexpected ways, some people become angry while others might withdraw into themselves or become completely numb with disbelief.
Mourning is how we cope with our loss. The rituals, the funeral, the wake is how we begin to process what has happened and add structure to what is a chaotic, confusing and sometimes frightening experience. Mourning also allows us to say goodbye. Seeing the body, watching the burial or scattering the ashes is a way of affirming what has happened. As hard as it is, sometimes we might need to see the evidence that a person really has died before we can begin to grieve.
Some people compare their grief to the rolling waves on a beach. They sometimes feel calm and other times they can feel strong and overwhelming that they can knock you off your feet.
Sometimes the waves of grief can be so powerful that they can lead to..
- not wanting or feeling able to get out of bed
- unable to eat properly, just not feeling hungry
- neglecting yourself - not washing or taking care of appearance
- the feeling that life just is not worth continuing without the loved person
- feeling unable to work or go out
- taking your feelings out on others
All these reactions are normal responses to grief unless they go on for a very long time.
If you feel concerned or worried about how you are feeling following a loss, do give us a ring and come and have a talk with one of our therapists who can help you to begin to understand the impact the loss is having on you and to help you to make sense of what and why you are feeling the way you are.