Grieving a Loss: Finding Comfort in Emotions

“In order to heal, you have to first be broken.” ― Renee Dyer, Eyes Wide Open

When we lose someone, expected or unexpected, it can turn our world upside down. Reality sets in and it can be hard to live the day to day like we used to knowing our loved one is no longer with us. There are many emotions associated with grief:

  • Overwhelming sadness
  • Anger
  • Guilt
  • Regret
  • Denial

These are just a few that can be very hard to handle during such a difficult time. Most of the emotions associated with grief are negative and uncomfortable, so we do anything we can to avoid feeling that way. These emotions do not serve us positively, therefore avoidance seems like the right answer. Many people may be avoiding their emotions and not even realize they are. They are uncomfortable with sadness, or anger, or perhaps they do not want to think about their loss. However, a very important part of the grieving process is to feel. Feel everything that comes your way. You must allow yourself to be broken, as Renee Dyer says, in order to heal. This means really feeling your emotions and becoming comfortable with the uncomfortable. Every person experiences grief differently. There may be similarities between people and their losses, but every experience is unique to that person. The outcome of grief is also different for everyone. One person may just want to be able to get out of bed in the morning, another may want to be able to speak about their loved one without crying, and another may want to be able to do things they used to do with that person that they feel they no longer can do without them at this time.

No matter what the goal is, the common factor is emotion. Everyone does feel an emotion after the death of a loved one. Finding a support that offers openness, understanding, and encouragement is a very positive way to cope with death. Find a source that allows you to be open and honest with what you are feeling. Talking about emotions can be one of the most relieving therapeutic techniques, and finding a person or group of people who can understand your emotions and offer support is another way to process how you are feeling. There are many ways to become more in tune with your emotions:

  • Meditation
  • Yoga
  • Journal
  • Thought log
  • Talking with peers/mentors/therapists

It is important to remember that becoming comfortable with uncomfortable feelings brings growth and acceptance to your process and life. It can be frightening and intimidating to face these emotions and may take a lot of time. There is not a timeline for grief. Some may grieve their loss for the rest of their lives, but it does not have to be a difficult, lonely time. You can find the positives in grief and live in a way that serves you and your happiness. Allow yourself to feel every emotion that comes to your being, find acceptance, and determine what you can do in order to live a life that is fulfills your needs.