At some point in everyone's life they will experience some level of loss. Loss comes in a variety of different packages such as the separation of a marriage or relationship. Loss of aspects of ourselves. The type of loss most common is the loss of a family member, friend or even pet.
Bereavement occurs when one looses someone who is loved by them which causes them to experience grief. Bereavement requires a person to experience the pain they endure and move through it in stages. First reactions to grief are emotional ones and in time will move into cognitive reactions as preparation is made to once again resume life.
Grief can occur not just only with the loss of a loved one but also the following areas of your life:
A variety of Psychologist over the years such as Freud and Kubler-Ross gave us valuable insights into the main distinct categories loss is broken into.
The way these stages occur will be different for each person and may depend on previous losses. Its quite common for them to rotate and you may at one point find yourself in anger only to go back to feeling denial again. There is NO set pattern to grief. The only thing grief has in common with each person is its emotions.
SHOCK & DENIAL
Shock is your security blanket. It keeps you protected from the devastating news you have just received. Shock comes as a kind of numbness. Everything seems surreal. In this space many report feelings of been out of body and viewing tragic scenes like an outsider.This feeling in bubble can last for some time and will last as long as your spirit needs it to. Denial is not fully been able to accept what has just occurred. You choose not to believe it and may find yourself walking around in a daze.
PAIN & GUILT
When the shock begins to wear of which in someways has been there to protect you against the devastating news you have just heard, the pain and then the guilt hits in often quite hard. The pain can cause you to re-play scene after scene in your mind, often like a never ending movie. Ever memory you ever shared, ever thing you may have said or done wrong comes back to haunt you. Each persons pain will be different and the type of relationship you had with the person who passed away will determine how you grieve. Its vital to feel this pain in order to move on to the next phase. Guilt can often eat away at you like a silent disease and you may even wish it was you that had been taken and want to trade places with your loved one. Life can be very unbalanced in this phase and its important to ask for help if you feel its all too much.
ANGER & BARGAINING
Anger can occur quite quickly after someone's passing, again it will depend on your relationship with them and the circumstances surrounding their death. You may have pent up frustration built on feelings of needing to blame someone or something for the loss of your loved one. You could be easily angry with yourself for things left unsaid or undone. Part of you may feel that if only you didn't do this or that, they may still be alive. Bargaining occurs when you try to trade some part of perhaps your behavior or actions for their life.
THE UPWARD TURN
For some the up ward turn, or the light bulb moment can take quite a long time to reach but when you do finally get there, you will begin to feel as if the fog is beginning to lift. If you have been experiencing physical signs to your grief, they will begin to lessen and you will begin to feel that its ok to live again. You give yourself permission not to feel so sad and begin to realize that your loved one would not wish you to be unhappy. A mediumship sitting can assist you in processing any unanswered questions, feelings and give you a sense that you have some control over the way you grieve.
REBUILDING YOUR LIFE
You have begun to take charge of your life a little more, the bills are been paid, your taking more care of yourself. You don't feel as overwhelmed by small chores, like before. Your inner thoughts are more constructive and your problems seem less and less. You can see solutions more easily and apply them without fear. You understand you are never going to be the person you where before your loss but you use what you have learnt to rebuild your life.
ACCEPTANCE & HOPE
You have moved into a space where you can begin to plan for the future and you are creating new ways of doing things and your past experiences no longer define you. You can look at your past without sadness or pain and feel proud you have come through that difficult phase in your life. You even allow yourself to feel happy again without feeling guilty. There is a new spring in your step and life feels fresh and new.
DEPRESSION- ISOLATION - REFLECTION
In this stage of grief you may feel very isolated and a deep sadness can commence for you. It almost feels like you have fallen into a black hole with no help, support or understanding from others. You tend to reject assistance from friends and family and feel they expect to much from you. Your thoughts are often on memories from the past or you may choose to numb them and not think at all. Thoughts run ninety to the dozen in your mind and every day can become a struggle to just even wake up. Your personal relationships, finances, goals and dreams are often deeply affected in this phase but it may have been a very obvious part of your grief if you have turned to alcohol, drugs or other unhealthy recreational habits. Your sleep patterns may be greatly effected and it can take time to climb out of this hole. If you have experienced multiple losses it can compound your feelings even more and you may have given up on your faith and most of life. Its important if things get very bleak for you to do your best to reach out if not to family and friends but a professional therapist or councellor.
PHYSICAL SYMPTOMS OF GRIEF
We talk so much about the emotional symptoms of Grief, however the physical ones are often the ones that we can identify more quickly, here are some of what can occur with you of your experiencing grief:
IS THERE A RIGHT OR WRONG WAY TO GRIEVE?
As no two people or relationships are the same, there is no right or wrong way to grieve. What ever your feelings maybe, its important to know that this is what is right for you at that time. Those feelings can change as you begin to explore all aspects of your grief and relationship with the person who passed away. Grief for many people is like been in an emotional wheelchair and you feel bound to the feelings you have. Grief can also be described as been on a roller coaster ride and the turbulent highs and lows can come in waves of emotions and stages. You often wish it would just go away. But it cant in truth until you fully deal with all aspects of your grief. The pain does lesson and in truth you never forget, even years on you may experience that intense feeling of grief perhaps at an anniversary or special occasion when you would have liked to share that memory with them. Allowing yourself to except its ok to have the feelings you have and embrace them in each moment, will go along way to helping you move through your grief.