Feb 15th 2021
Grief - a small word that carries so much meaning and emotion. It is most often associated with the death of a loved one. It tends to symbolize the experience of loss that follows the passing of a person that is deeply cared for, and the ups and downs that come with healing. While this is definitely true, grief can accompany a whole array of experiences and evoke the same strong heavy emotions. Some of these experiences can include:
All of these experiences carry with them a sense of loss of something that is important to you and can bring about a discomfort that can at times be hard to identify. For some, this can manifest as sadness, difficulty getting out of bed, loss of motivation, and crying. For others, it can show up as irritability, anger, frustration, and a desire to be alone. In other words, every unique person can have a different emotional experience following a similar event... and that's okay! Just like with the passing of a loved one, there is no right or wrong way to grieve the loss. It can be even more challenging if you don't understand why it is impacting you so strongly. Allowing yourself to recognize that you are going through the process of grief and loss in these different situations can help alleviate the pressure to feel better so quickly and help increase self-compassion while you go through it. As always, reaching out to a mental health professional can be helpful if you find that you are struggling a lot and may need some help processing what happened and how to move forward.
Whatever the situation may be, try to be kind with yourself. Loss is hard and painful, and it is normal for it to take some time to move through the emotions. Allow yourself some time and space to adapt to the change and take care of yourself while you do it. Grief is a natural part of life - being able to name it when it shows up in yours is a first step to healing.
Jessica Landry, M.Ed., RP (Qualifying)