By Elise Brooke
If you have not read part one please follow the link to read,
The seven stages of grief continued…
Not everyone will experience all five stages of grief or in this order. Grief is different for everyone, so you may begin coping with loss in the bargaining stage and find yourself in anger or denial next. You may remain for months or years in one of the five stages but skip others entirely.
Stage Four; Depression
Just when friends may think you should be getting on with your life, a long period of sad reflection will likely overtake you. Encouragement from others is not helpful during this stage. You finally realize the true magnitude of your loss and it depresses you. You reflect on things you did together with your loved one and focus on memories of the past. You may sense feelings of emptiness and despair, one may chose to isolate yourself from others in order to fully cope with the loss. In the early stages of loss, one may be running from the emotions, trying to stay a step ahead. In this stage you maybe able to embrace and work through the emotions. Depression can feel overwhelming, you may feel foggy and confused.
Stage Five; Acceptance
Acceptance is not necessarily a happy or uplifting stage. It does not mean one has moved past the grief or loss. It means you have accepted it and have come to understand what it means in your life now. Look to acceptance as a way to see that there may be more good days than bad days, but still bad days and that’s ok. In this stage you start to adjust to life without your dear one, life becomes calmer and more organized. Physical symptoms lesson and depression lifts a little. You start to see the light a bit at the end of the tunnel. Acceptance doses not mean instant happiness, given the pain and turmoil you have experienced, you can never return to the carefree, untroubled you that existed before. But you will find a way forward.
As you become more functional, your mind starts working again and you find yourself seeking realistic solutions to problems and you begin to reconstruct yourself and life without them. Eventually, you will be able to think about your lost loved one without pain. Sadness, yes! But the wrenching pain will fade, you will anticipate good times ahead, and even find joy in living again.
To understand grief one must realize that no one experiences the same thing. Grief is very personal, and you may feel something different every time.