A Made-Up Story That Explains Something That People Do Understand You’ve Got the Power-How to Know If You Are Doing Your Grief Work

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You’ve Got the Power-How to Know If You Are Doing Your Grief Work

Donna’s wife died suddenly. It wasn’t meant to be, though,” was all he could think of as he accepted the reality of the situation. Chronic pain

Donna’s reaction was normal. Many people who grieve deeply believe that grief is passive. They believe that grief will resolve itself with time. Others search aimlessly for a cure. They want to believe that there is some magic potion their doctor can give them that will cure the pain forever. Some grieving people hope that someone will put their mind at ease by saying the right, perfect thing that will help them come to terms with the loss. Perhaps their pastor or spiritual advisor will say magic words that will help them trust God to heal their wounded hearts; And help them move forward. But still more prevalent is the belief that upon waking up any morning, the mourner will miraculously recover from whatever ails them for so long.

But sorrow is not like that. It just doesn’t go away. And, no one ever told Gary and I that we had the power to heal our own pain. Like other bereaved, we wanted that magic cure. Painless effort. Simple answer. Quick fix. What we found instead was that grief was “work” – and only our own grief had the power to heal.

What is the work of sorrow?

Grief work can best be described as making a deliberate choice to re-engage in the work of living through self-reflection, social interaction, retrospection, expanding your comfort zone, and rebuilding an image of a new “you.” Simply put, it’s choosing to move on and live again. Grieving gives you the strength to heal your grief.

Grieving is a process of revisiting wounds; retelling stories; And a series of steps that lead you to a healing transformation. And sometimes, you may unintentionally act on your grief—not realizing that what you’re doing is contributing to healing the pain! There is no text book that teaches or trains you through this process. The act of grief is often undefined; Undocumented, not encouraged, and mostly left to chance for the bereaved. But, oh, how necessary it really is!

No one can work out your grief for you. You may have a great circle of friends for support, compassionate mentors, endless invitations to reconnect, intense love from family and friends, good advice and constant encouragement… but none of these can make your grief work for you. It’s a choice you make on your own. Sometimes it hurts. Sometimes it feels like you’re not being true to your feelings—that you’re betraying your love for the person who died. Most of the time, this means letting go, not of your sadness, but of the feelings that are holding you back. Sometimes it takes tears and frustration, but in the end the choice is worth the dilemma; And the result creates freedom. So where does the energy come from? It comes from within… often subtly, at first. Gradually you start experiencing a day with “progress”. You might actually think, “I can do that.” This becomes the first step.

How can you tell if you’re doing something sad, intentionally or unintentionally?

There are signs that you are doing grief work. Many times you may not see these as signs that you are working to heal your pain. But constant progress and exhausting all efforts will lead to all the energy needed to heal your grief.

You spoke for yourself, at least temporarily. You told everyone you know the story of this loss of your life. You have reached deep into your soul and felt the emotions of life before, during and after the death of your loved one. The painful parts become less obsessive and you focus, instead, on the cherished memories of the good times. Your story becomes important to you and you take every opportunity.

you cried a lot That you cannot imagine that one more tear could be left. Yet they are there; And they come when least expected. You recognize that tears honor the special relationship you had with your loved one. They are the raindrops of life’s adversities.

You write your feelings away Until your spoken language has few words left to express sorrow and pain as deeply as you do. So you use the same words over and over in different ways knowing that putting them down on paper eases the heartache and comforts you.

You ask “Why me?” Seeking answers to all its mysterious questions. Why him/her? Why now?” and realize that no one can answer that question for you. It’s not easy to give up searching, but eventually you realize it’s time to ask God, “What next?” Where do I go from here? And trust. In his plan.

May you make peace with your family and friends You hold your grief hostage by expecting their limitless ability to love and listen. You are grateful for their patience and support. But you realize that it’s time to stand your ground in this changing world and allow them to get on with their lives.

You stop beating yourself up with petty excuses. Yes, maybe you are pure,… and maybe you are cud, but “what if” would have been different. You recognize that all these excuses don’t change a thing. Whatever you decide; It can’t bring your loved one back. You acknowledge that you have tried your best at the time.

You make peace with God even though you don’t understand. You may still feel betrayed, but you recognize that God holds you in his arms just as he holds others who experience painful loss. His son also died. Life and death are human experiences. You keep your faith in his constant care.

You let go of holding a grudge against another person who may or may not have been responsible for your loved one’s death. You recognize that emotions that run deep require forgiveness. This is the only thing that can free you from your anger. Remember, anger happens because we cannot control the situation. Forgiveness lets you go. It does not absolve guilt.

You have challenged the legal system And win or lose, you’ve done what you can to achieve justice in a war that won’t bring back your loved ones. But you believe that the work you have done gives some satisfaction to someone who took it from you. Now it’s time to move on.

You have walked a thousand miles in someone else’s shoes And felt their pain. Many times you wouldn’t exchange their experience of grief for yours – whatever the reason, grief hurts; But you can deal with your own losses. And, then you recognize that it’s better to walk a mile in your own shoes.

  • You feel every burst of sadness and turn each burst into newfound joy. A grief outburst is a sudden memory triggered by a sight, sound, or feeling that initially brought grief. Over time, sadness can be replaced with memories of happier times and happy stories. You use this energy to share the life of the person who was once yours in a more positive way.

  • Give credit for what you’ve learned. You realize that the books you’ve read and the speakers you’ve heard have intimate knowledge of what you’re getting into, but they can’t do it for you. They can only give you hope that life will be good again. But healing your grief is really up to you.

  • You recognize that others in the support group are struggling with similar feelings and disbelief You join a group to make a connection, and that connection makes you feel stronger. But the journey is taken by each of us individually. You respect their support and move on.

You are out to comfort a friend Who has experienced recent grief. You are not a seasoned mourner, but you are empathetic. Compassion allows you to accept the pain they feel – and something to remind you that just being with them will help them through this difficult time.

You accept a worthy “cause”. Or rally around a principle that expresses your innermost feelings. You feel good when you help others. This is the superior work of mourning! You have now come full circle.

  • You honor your “new identity“You have changed. The role you have played as a wife, parent, sibling, or friend, and accept that that role may have changed; it has made you who you are today. Be stronger, wiser, more compassionate, and prouder of you. You are.” New” respects you.

  • You invest in life again. You open your heart and mind to new possibilities, new adventures and new ideas. And, you feel inspired. You recognize that “purpose” begins with attitude and a desire to honor what you’ve been through and a mantra to guide you on the road ahead.

Sad work is tiring. Grief is grief. Grief is something we think little about, but each of us actively tries to work through the hardest days and make choices that lead to reconciliation.

For most of us, our grief work culminates in a renewed interest and curiosity about the meaning and purpose of life. Our inner consciousness has awakened. We search and find impossible answers. By doing this, we realize that we are part of something much bigger than myself. We exist in a universe of many dimensions and our lives are tiny in the grand scheme of things. We become religious, spiritual or both. We are passionate about living lives with dignity, purpose and meaning.

We subscribe to the work of grief without intentionally signing up for a class or filling out an application to become a lifetime member of something good for our health and well-being. You are healing. You’ve got the power!

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