coping with death
In the first year of my grief, I was pretty much running on numb. I get that this second year will be a tough haul. My latest funk was triggered in a doctor's office when I was filling out paperwork.
Before my father passed in 2008, I was fortunate enough to spend almost every day with him during his final summer. We went on dozens of long drives through the countryside, comparing faraway cornfields to the ones close to his farm, and tracking down old tractors.
One mother's story on hearing of her sons tragic death in Thailand, and the journey to bring home his baby son. ENTRY 1
Josh's Story I was wakened by the most awful news a mother could possibly hear. It was a long day the day before, and I was
I lost my daughter a year and half ago, and I still consider my grief to be very new. But every time I meet up with a friend or see family, their reactions to my pain surprises me.
While my heart remains broken, I want to share what I've learned from the front lines of the greatest battle of my life. These lessons haven't healed me completely, but they have helped. And I hope they help other people who, God forbid, have to fight through tragic loss.
Being thrown back into the world with a heightened sense of self brings me to a place I can't turn back from. I am in a mental and emotional purgatory but now that I've given myself a chance to speak to all of this, I have found some clarity. I'm going to let my hard days be hard days, and thank my good days for shining light into the shadows.
Loss is a part of life, but in the West we're generally not good at experiencing and expressing grief. Sobonfu Somé, one of today's top voices of African spirituality, recently shared lessons on grief from the Dagara tradition of Burkina Faso at a talk in Asheville, North Carolina. Here, Omega shares our top takeaways.
However in my conversations with grief survivors I have found that all of them feel they have grown emotionally and spiritually because of the challenges they have experienced; and their current life's work has been shaped and inspired by their grief, as well.
Of course as time goes on, life moves forward. You never forget. And you'll never be the same. How could you be? There are some things in life that are so big and so profound that we can't experience them without being changed. Here are some of the lessons I've learned and the ways I've changed:
After a few weeks of grieving I'm so tired of my head, riding the roller-coaster of loss again and again. I crash, then come up to refocus my attention on living again; read a book with my son, do some coloring, punch the bag at the gym, work out dinner... get through the days on a micro-level, nerve by nerve.
I was lucky to have been born into a family of readers; bibliophilia is a genetic condition for us. Grannie used to tell me that ever since childhood she felt that she needed nothing else for happiness but a book and some bread and butter. I've always loved that image.
He sighed again, and there was something of an apology in it. "I am sorry you have to do this," he told me. I pulled my phone from my pocket and called the vet. He said to come whenever I am ready. I said "a few hours," to give the kids time for their goodbyes.
It's been 32 years since you left the earth and Mother's Day is still so hard for me. I was 24 years young when you died. Although I was an adult, I was still young enough to need you. And I still need you today. I wonder every day how different my life would be if you were here.