(Site Guide No. 6)
For a short while after our loved one dies, many of us are busy with taking care of necessary tasks, and these often involve other people. Their death must be registered; funeral arrangements must be made; friends and family will need to be informed. Days rush by in a blur; we may experience intense emotions or we may feel somewhat shell-shocked and disbelieving.
Eventually though, we find ourselves past the funeral and staring into the reality of our present life. Just at the point of time when other people are getting on with their own lives, we are faced with gigantic adjustments – practically, socially, emotionally, and perhaps spiritually too. We are quite likely to be tossed on a rough sea of emotions and wonder how we are going to get through without drowning.
This is when we discover – if we hadn’t already realised it – that grief doesn’t progress in a nice straight line with orderly stages. No, grief is much more like a rollercoaster. Up and down, over and under, back and forth.
We all experience grief in our own way, but there are some common features. Sometimes it helps to realise that other people have ‘been there’ and ‘done that’ and they are still here to tell the tale.
Here are some articles on different aspects of this rollercoaster ride – perhaps you’ll find something to give you courage as you endure whatever you are facing at this time.
It would be great if there really were only five stages of grief, and you passed through them in a nice, neat chronological order. Unfortunately, grief isn’t like that!
Life often seems unfair. Getting out our feelings about this can help us cope.
Many people find their self-confidence takes a big hit when they’re grieving. Building ourselves back up again is a constant process.
How the kindness of others can sometimes help us go forward when we feel stuck.
Reflections on the “tyranny of positive thinking” and facing the reality of what we are going through.
A personal reflection and poem in those moments when grief feels unbearable.
For more readings on the impact of grief, see: