- Give yourself time. It is estimated that the bereavement process can last around two years, sometimes more. Refrain from putting deadlines to your grief.
- Allow yourself to feel and express your emotions. Sometimes you will be able to do this with friends and relatives; sometimes you may need the support of a group or counsellor. Art, journaling and physical activities may also serve as channels for expression.
- The bereavement process is not a straight line. As time passes, you may start feeling better, stronger, and then, for no apparent reason, you can feel sad again. This is perfectly normal. There will be easier days and harder days. Days when you may not actually think about the deceased and others when you have the person constantly in your mind. Don’t feel guilty for feeling happy. And don’t feel weak for feeling sad. Be gentle with your feelings.
- You don’t always have to be strong. Accept the help from friends and family, especially in practical matters, such as helping with chores and errands, or just sharing a coffee.
- Commune with nature. Being out in the fresh air, surrounded by the natural world helps improve our moods and soothe our spirits. You don’t have to do much, just be, breathe in and allow Mother Nature to do her healing.
- Take care of yourself. It may be difficult the first days, but it is important that you keep your body and mind healthy. It doesn’t have to be complicated. Nutritious soups, fruit, enough water to keep you well hydrated, a walk in the park, perhaps a few breathing exercises or relaxation techniques to help you deal with the grief.
- Accept that life will never be the same, but that doesn’t mean that, eventually, it cannot be good again. A different kind of good; one that you probably did not plan originally, and that may be a bit uncertain at the moment, but that can still be joyful and beautiful, in a different way.
I hope these ideas can be of value to you and your loved ones. If you feel you may need more support, please feel free to contact me at www.journeyingsoul.com or on 01245 280 495. We can have a chat and see if spiritual/bereavement counselling may be for you.