Some get to say goodbye. They can show appreciation and share countless I love you’s. They’re the lucky ones – if such a person exists in death.
But you didn’t get that chance.
The shock, the trauma… Unexpected loss sends waves of grief you can’t control. This powerlessness lasts a long time, sometimes arising at the most inopportune moments. In today’s post, you’ll learn 4 steps for surviving when hope feels lost.
1. Give Yourself Space
Furious, lost, scared or numb… You need to process these feelings, not shove them aside.
When faced with a tragic death, there aren’t any wrong emotions. You have permission to feel what you feel. So, give yourself space and grace to work through it.
2. Prepare for Grieving Process
Grief takes up a lot of time and emotional energy.
You may want to “power through” and keep going with your daily life. But putting pressure on a broken leg only worsens the injury; the same principle applies to your heart. You have limitations, and failing to respect them only makes things worse.
If possible, take time off of work and reduce your responsibilities. Outsource menial tasks, accept help from friends, let the kids set the dinner table.
3. Surround Yourself With Support
Grief causes physical, mental and emotional pain. You can’t get through it alone. In fact, attempting to only extends the grieving process. It will leave you at your loneliest while you’re experiencing the worst days of your life.
Don’t be an island. Surround yourself with love from those who can help you heal move forward.
4. Go a Day at a Time
The pain of loss can sweep in like a tidal wave at times. It will pull you out to sea, overcome you with uncontrollable sadness, and then leave you back on the beach to dry. The good news is that the tide will go out. You will make it back to the beach; your feet will stand on solid ground.
In the meantime, take help when it’s offered. Ask for help when it is needed. You will have good days and bad days. Take each one as it comes.
And on your worst days remember: the time you had with your loved one is a part of you.
As Helen Keller once said, “What we have once enjoyed we can never lose. All that we love deeply becomes a part of us.”