Grief is a natural process: Most of us have heard of stages and phases of grief that have been shared over the past decades.  The most important thing to know abut Grief is that there is no one predicable grief process and there are no set timelines. We all experience grief differently, as unique as a finger print or snowflake.  Grief experiences differ based on who we are, whom we lost, and how much our day-to-day life is altered, and how we normally cope with difficult situations and challenges.

Grief experiences vary: When you are actively grieving, you can feel very different from your usual self as your emotions, your mind, and your re-actions might be unreliable. Sadness, anger, guilt, confusion, depression, and even relief are common emotions. Changes in sleeping and eating patterns and even development of physical pain are not uncommon. Sudden tears or sense of being overwhelmed by your loss may happen without warning and sometimes triggered by unexpected events such as a song, sitting down to eat a particular meal, passing a familiar place or anything that reminds you of your loss.   You are not going crazy; this is a natural part of grief.

Self care and information: Having more information about grief can help you to better understand your responses and be better prepared for your journey through the process.  Remember to be gentle and patient with yourself as you grieve. If you would like additional information and support, Hospice Associates is ready to assist you. Bereavement support is offered free of charge. Contact one of our offices for more information.

Hope Himel-Benson, LCSW, Director of Specialty Services

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