Remembering A Loved One
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Politics and Activism

Remembering A Loved One

The stages of grief.

Remembering A Loved One
Walker Thornton

Losing someone you love is one of the hardest things in life to overcome and accept. We find ourselves bargaining, asking for alternatives when we know that there is nothing that can be done to get them back. And so we go one day by day trying to find something, anything to fill the hole in our hearts where they once were. But as time passes we blindly realize that the pain eases away eventually, and although they are missed, we accept they are no longer suffering and in a better place watching down upon us.

In every loss of life, we celebrate all that they accomplished while they were here with us and all of the lives they impacted come together to remind us that they will always be here with us. As humans, we tend to be forgetful and lose sight in something that meant the world to us because we do not want to be reminded of the pain we might feel. And so we avoid the very thing that makes us remember, everything except all the good left behind because we see it as a sign. A sign to never remember that a life lost is kept alive through those left behind.

And as holidays or special events approach, the suppressed pain and ache we feel rushes to the surface. These times are most painful as we have to continue living life making more memories without someone who meant the world to us. And we slowly find ourselves in a repeating cycle of the stages of grief.

1. Denial and Isolation

The first reaction of a loved one is to deny the reality of the situation. It is a normal reaction to rationalize overwhelming emotions. It is a defense mechanism that buffers the immediate shock. We block out the words and hide from the facts.

2. Anger

The intense emotion is deflected from our vulnerable core, redirected and expressed instead as anger. The anger may be aimed at inanimate objects, complete strangers, friends, or family. Anger may be directed at our dying or deceased loved one. We know the person is not to be blamed making us feel guilty for being angry, and this makes us angrier.

3. Bargaining

We may make a deal with God or our higher power in an attempt to postpone the inevitable. This is a weaker line of defense to protect us from the painful reality.

4. Depression

We feel sadness and regret and worry about the costs and burial. We spend less time with others that depend on us.

5. Acceptance

This phase is marked by withdrawal, calm, and social interaction is limited. �Coping with loss is ultimately a deeply personal experience—nobody can help you or understand the emotions that you’re going through. But others can be there for you and help comfort you through this process. The best thing you can do is to allow yourself to feel the grief as it comes over you.

Mourning a loss is never easy, but without we see that it is necessary for helping us move forward. Every day people lose someone, whether it be caused by a tragic sudden loss or from the hands of a violent crime pain, is felt no matter what. There are multiple ways someone can overcome this challenge even when it feels impossible. The help from others can comfort individuals or overcoming it alone can also be an option, but it can be done. Nothing is impossible and grieving properly will lead to a healthier acceptance, and although the pain will never fade, it will become easier to see that they are never completely gone.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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