If only our society had a better understanding of grief.

If only we understood – all of us, that there is no time line. We do not “get over” our grief in 3 days, 3 weeks, or even 3 months. Depending on the relationship, grief can take a long time. David Kessler states that sometimes acute grief can last up to two years. This is not to discourage you, but to give you permission to take as long as you need. Do not allow others to dictate your time line.

If only we understood – all of us, that grief is not a linear process. We move back and forth, around and around. Unfortunately there are no boxes to tick. There are common experiences for those that grieve, and it does not happen in stages or steps. Often people come to us for support because they thought they were “over that part of their grief” and don’t understand why they feel like they are right back where they started.

The truth is that we go back and forth, up and down, around and around. This is natural. As our world changes without our person, we might have the same experience over and over again. This is not to discourage you but to let you know that you are okay. Grief is about finding a new way to move through the world. This takes courage and this takes patience.

If only we understood that grief is not an illness. It is a natural process and we are supposed to do it. Each of us will grieve in our own unique way. The only way out is through. We need to feel the feelings and somehow find ways to express them. This might be in a support group or it might be by planting a garden or renovating the kitchen. The point is grief is not to be pushed away. This is not to discourage you, but to help you see a gentler way to move through your grief. When you know that it is a necessary part of life, we can be more gentle with ourselves.

If only… we could allow ourselves to grieve. If necessary help others understand, but only if you have the energy. Sometimes it is more helpful to be discerning about who you share your grief with. People are so uncomfortable that they try to fix you. You do not need to be fixed.

Be Gentle,

Denise Torgerson
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