Grief Counseling Has Begun

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“The wild feral animal that comes in your house and won’t leave (or listen to you).”

That’s the way the grief counselor described how an event like this – (a sudden devastating diagnosis and death of a loved one)- affects the human brain. And it’s completely accurate.

It’s also a great way to describe how the memories of the lost person plow into you when you least expect it. Welcome or not, they come flooding back like an unexpected assault right when you think you’re going to be okay.

It’s only been a little over a month- it still feels unreal- yet the ashes prove it is real.

Nothing is the same. Suddenly there’s no one (except pets) to greet you when you wake up in the morning. No one to brew coffee for and start the day with. No more dinners out, nor birthdays, nor holidays to share together. No one to give the much-needed hugs, validation, and encouragement.

And yet, there is so much to do. Little time to grieve, or even dare to let yourself feel. Numbly, life goes on unmarked by everyone but the family who are left with a tangle of emotion that they don’t even know how to vocalize. And the children- and grandchildren- who just can’t even process what’s happening.

They throw themselves into work, or play, or anything they can to get a reprieve from the hurricane of un-named feelings swirling around in their minds. And the 5 – year- old in her innocence and inability to grasp the finality of it simply turns it into a pretend situation with her Barbies.

I’ve been advised to write about it by both my counselor and my doctor. I’ve noticed that trying to carry on as I always did before isn’t working very well. The emptiness and feelings just refuse to be ignored. Yes, I know and am confident that my husband is no longer in misery and constant pain. And for that I’m grateful- What I watched him suffer, I wouldn’t wish on anyone.

I will write because they have advised me to- and somehow it really does help. I am returning to my daily workout routine (trying anyway). I’ve lost 13 pounds and my blood pressure is great- I’m eating well – I was already in the habit of eating ‘clean.’

But I have headaches every single day now and my hair has started falling out. Somehow this is especially upsetting, because my husband – (and everyone else) – has always loved my long hair. The Doctor confirmed yesterday that both the hair loss and the headaches are due to the stress that erupted like a volcano in December and continued as I provided hospice care for my husband until he passed away last month.

Apparently you really can’t get by on an hour or two of sleep every night for weeks, and not be affected by it. I am told that the hair loss will correct itself once the stress is reduced- so I am doing everything they said I should do- counseling, writing, making sure I get enough sleep, managing stress and resuming my exercise routines. Adding to this a scoop of collagen powder in my coffee every morning, a balanced, clean diet, biotin and other vitamins. I’ve also started watching comedy and making time for relaxing things that I enjoy but “never have time for.”

Laughter really does help- It doesn’t take away the feelings, but it does make it easier, and keeps me from dwelling on the things I can’t change. And where these things fail, The Lord Himself takes over. He reminds me that my peace, hope, and security is found in Him – even in the valley of the shadow of death. (Psalm 23)


https://www.bible.com/bible/114/psa.23.4


found on Pinterest

17 thoughts on “Grief Counseling Has Begun

  1. Not having lost spouse nor children, I really don’t know the depth of your feelings, but I have lost parents, other relatives and many friends, not to mention fur children…and yes, even then those feelings of loss and emptiness are so overwhelming.
    My hardest time was when I lost my mother, because I was born on her birthday…and we always shared that time together.
    This past Sunday at church, we sang a hymn I love…and I burst into tears…oh dear. It brought back memories of some good friends that I had penned that into the sympathy cards for their families…I had no idea that would happen.
    Sometimes I cannot even identify a trigger that starts me into that mode.

    I hope you keep putting down your feelings, it really does help.

    And there is SO much comfort in the scriptures you well know. They give hope and peace when we don’t know what else to think or do.

    I pray peace and comfort for you as you go through this, and may the Lord continue to surround you with his strong arms.

    ((((( ♥ )))))

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you for your encouragement-and yes-I know that no matter the relation- or whether it’s a four-legged friend or human- any time you lose any loved one- it’s extremely hard.

      I’m so glad though that you and your mother shared faith in the Lord- and even though it’s painful when you encounter those triggers, you can have the confidence-(as I do regarding my husband)- that she is resting joyfully now in the Arms of her Savior. Take comfort in the reality that she will never again suffer any pain, grief, rejection or sorrow.

      Thank you also for your prayers- and I pray the same for you. That the Comforter hold you securely and give you joy and peace-even in the middle of it all. He Himself is our peace- and our everlasting Father. ♥️

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you. Yes, my parents passed into glory in late 2005, and early 2006…that stress, I think was the root cause of the cancer that was discovered about 6 months later…but God healed me, via all the modern medical science we have these days. And yet, a friend at church with the same ovarian cancer as mine passed away. I struggled with that ij the why her and not me…its hard not to question God, but its much better just to acknowledge that He is in control, and we just do not yet (or ever) know the reasons for what is.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Awww – Thank you. I’m so glad to hear that. It really helps me. I am working on posting more often – sometimes though, I have every intention of it, but something unexpected happens, or when I try, I can’t focus. Thank you for hanging in there with me!

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    1. Yes. I realize that. And while they tell me I need to talk about it and write about it, I also don’t want to be consumed by it. It helps to talk a little but then I need to shift my focus to happier times and to my reasons to be thankful even in the midst of it.

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  2. Thank you so much for sharing today CO Mom! You sound grounded & focused. And what you are feeling & experiencing is 150% normal. There will be a see-saw of emotions for the first 6 months (more or less). Counselling REALLY helped me put one foot in front of the other & move forward.
    You are right that there is so much ‘to do’ when a loved one passes. More so with a Spouse it seems….
    And to this day certain songs that were Paul’s & my songs will play on the radio & I am transported back to 1984 when we met or when the song came out & tears will fall. He passed in 1996 & I still have ‘moments’. For me it proves that LOVE CONQUERS ALL……even Death.
    One day at a time…feel the feelings & remember your love….you WILL get thru this!!!
    {{{hugs}}} BellaSita Mum (Sherri-Ellen) & ***purrss*** BellaDharma

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I ache at the raw pain you are experiencing. The suddenness of the change has to be horrible. It sounds like you have a good grief counselor, so that will be a real blessing. Try to be as patient and understanding with yourself as you obviously are being with everyone else.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you- the last few days have been very busy and yesterday was difficult as the whole family met with the Pastor to plan the Memorial service coming up. Sushi and I are doing all we can to distract her. We’re good at that.

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