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17th Jan

2017

Loss & Grief
HUMAN LIFE IS PRECIOUS beyond measure.

Reflect on your own life. Think of all the things you love. Of course, there will always be some things you don’t enjoy–chores you dislike, things that irritate you. Overall, though, there is so much that you come to love over the course of life. There are things and places and experiences, both large and small, that give you pleasure in so many ways. And then there are your loved ones, the people you care for. To love and to be loved. What could be more valuable than this?

The things we love, and even more, the people we love are what give value to our lives. They bring happiness and contentment. They make life worth living. The loss of these things, the loss of what we love can make life seem so very painful.

Loss, of one kind or another is an inevitable part of life. At one point or another we all experience the loss of something we love. It is very painful and the greater the love, the more intense the pain.

The internal pain we feel when we experience a significant loss. All of us will, at one time or another, experience grief. All of us will undergo this overwhelming emotional turmoil. When this happens, it can help to understand some basic things about the nature of grief.

First, we should realize that grief is natural. When we experience a serious loss, we are going to experience emotional pain. Sometimes people will wonder what is wrong with them. Why are they feeling so out of control? Why does it hurt so much? They need to know that this is the nature of grief. It hurts and can even feel like torture at times. It is, though, a completely natural process.

Triggers of Grief

It is also useful to know that grief can be triggered by a variety of situations. If you love something and lose it, you may experience grief. You may move away from a home you have come to love. You may change jobs leaving behind a position you really enjoyed. Many situations can lead to deep emotional sadness. Those so affected are experiencing grief even though they may not recognize what it is.

The deepest and most intense forms of grief, though, are those associated with bereavement for the death of a loved one. To love someone and then to lose them is an intensely painful experience. Such grief can seem crippling at first. How can one go on?

The grief experienced during bereavement can lead to many questions. How long will this pain continue? What can be done to find some comfort? Am I taking too long to resume a “normal” life? In future blogs, we will discuss various aspects of bereavement.

One thing to know and remember is that in matters of grief no two people are the same. Grief is an intensely personal and individual experience. Different people react in different ways. Different people recover at different rates. When dealing with those who are bereaved, be gentle with them. And when going through bereavement yourself, be gentle with yourself. Above all, be patient with yourself. Healing will take time.

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