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What have you learned about grief? Can you help others with some insights, or answers to their questions? Supporting others can often help the one grieving, or maybe you have just been silent for too long. Need to vent?


If you are rehearsing the moment of death;
If you were told not to cry;
If you are having nightmares, or flashbacks;
If you are coping, recovering from your loss;


You are welcome here......

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The Holidays (well, really, any day that was important to you and your former loved one) suck no matter how much time has passed after your loved one is gone...
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Oh patooski, I got a big smile on my face when I read about your dad and his dictionary. My dad had a dictionary right next to him at all times too! He would open a page and start reading...just for fun! His old one was getting so ratty that I bought him a new bigger one one year for Christmas. I think that was the best gift he got.

Thanks for bringing back a great memory. Well, what do you know? I guess I take after him too. That just dawned on me-I always go to the dictionary, like he did. The acorn doesn't fall far from the tree. Miss you dad. ;)
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SueC57, I love what you wrote. We Are all different - I think grief is so personal - as unique as the person who is suffering it. I know we do all talk to those loved ones who have gone on. I love that you went to the dictionary. My father always had a great big one available and always said " Look it up"! Isn't it interesting that the dictionary really describes it all so well. Heartbreak and more. Yep. Thank you.
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In 1977, my best friend was the matron of honor at my wedding. She was in labor during the ceremony and they never made it to the reception. My "wedding present" was born as we were cutting the cake! How special this baby was to me. I became his God mother. He suffered through his short life (28) with (later diagnosed) schizophrenia. He committed suicide 10+ years ago. He was never stable but was the sweetest young man. He and I enjoyed many phone conversations.
His mother was devastated when he died but I don't think she was surprised. She kept it "together" better than I did most times. (She also had lived with his disease and I haven't). We rarely talk anymore but I e-mailed every anniversary of his death. On his 10th anniversary of passing, I said I hoped that God would comfort her sorrow on that hard day. She wrote back that her pain had turned to peace and joy. She remembers all the good parts from her son and her heart is at rest.

We're all different. I still cry when I think of him. I talk to him occasionally (a practice a friend of mine thinks is "strange") and tell him that I wished he had stuck around. I also tell him that we'll pick up with our conversations when I get there. I can just see his smile. (tears falling now).
The dictionary says;
Grief-deep sorrow, especially that caused by someone's death.
synonyms; sorrow, misery, sadness, anguish, pain, distress, heartache, heartbreak, agony, torment, affliction, suffering, woe, desolation, dejection, despair.
I am still grieving for him. I'm glad that his mother has gone past that. Everyone processes differently.
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Yoga Girl and Patty

I'm so sorry for your loss.
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Grief, as you all have been saying, can sneak up and wipe you out if not addressed early, even if it is talking to someone. Not sure, but denial is part of the process.
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I saw my grief counselor the other day. I rarely cry at home but boy when I'm with her it rains. It feels good but exhausting. She asked if I would be open to a support group run at the Bereavement Center and after speaking and listening to all of you I said I would. She is also planning on a book group utilizing "Traveling Light" by Max Lucado. If you ever want a good read and affirmation of God's abiding love for you - read Max Lucado. Lorri knew I had read this book and several others by him and said that is why she chose it. She recommended it to me. The Book Club is tentatively planned for March. I am really looking forward to it and another opportunity to read Max's wisdom and faith with other people sharing.
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The darned thing is that anything can trigger it (the grief), a smell, a picture, a piece of clothing....anything.
Then a tear and, if not "caught" in time, a flood of them. Quick, where's the Kleenex? After a quick eye dab (trying to save the mascara) and a blow of the nose, we can compose ourselves once more.
I try to look at these "episodes" as keeping the memory alive. With me, these moments are usually followed with a little "talk" to the one I'm missing. I tell them I know they are safe and happy with God and, when my time comes, we'll pick up where we left off. Then I try to divert back to whatever I was doing before I got distracted. 

Maybe it's our loved ones' way of reminding us that they're still with us, in spirit instead of body.
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Bless you all for the loss of those very special loved ones that we have been caring for. 
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Oh Yogagirl, I'm so sorry to hear about your dad.
Grief is a sneaky old thing. I went into the spare bedroom where my MIL died at our house on hospice. I was going to dig out Christmas decorations. Shucks. Here came a tear. There is still nothing in there almost 1 1/2 years later. Just a big flat screen t.v. nobody watches. I just shut the door again lol!
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I think the biggest help has been that grief never goes away. In my lifetime my father committed suicide. I lost two daughters , one during surgery and the other in a fatal car crash. Following that I lost my husband, my mother to an open and shut colon cancer and my sister died 2-1/2 years ago. I am always waiting for the other shoe to fall. If it were not for God in my life I could not go on. Grief is my constant companion but I can learn to live with it. My ultimate help is knowing that I will sometime be in glory with our Lord and rejoin those I have lost. We have rescue animals and our home is their "forever" home. My forever home is yet to come. Time moves more quickly than we know. The inevitability of death is what I trust in, not in a morbid way, but in a joyful way because that is when I will be in my forever home. PS - My dogs will be there too.
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Dear Pattyrnma,
So sorry for your many losses, too much to bear without the Lord. Glad that you have the comfort of the Lord.

Yogagirl,
So sorry you have had to say goodbye to your dear sweet Dad. ~Hugs~ sending you thoughts of comfort and love.
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ToSendHelp: Thank you and so many others for letting me know that grief comes in waves. For days and weeks you are okay and then out of nowhere you are completely destroyed. This is a process that I am going through. I am seeing my grief counselor today. I will try to bring something back to share.

Stay with the Lord. He is a never ending gift in your life.
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Dear Patty,

I am so sorry for your pain and sorrow. Thinking of you during this difficult time. Please know we are all here. Sending you love and hugs.
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I'm so sorry for the loss of your father. May God grant you peace and comfort. Take care of yourself.
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Yogagirl, MY thoughts are with you in the loss of your Dear Dad!
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Yoga girl, so, so sorry to hear of your dear Father's passing. My thoughts and prayers are with you.
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Yogagirl - I'm so sorry about your dad! You have my sincere condolences. Be kind to yourself, I think the first few days are the hardest. ::hugs::

Pattyrnma - oh my goodness, you've dealt with a lot of grief! And I'm so sorry about your daughter! My deepest condolences on your loss. I'm glad you have support around you. All you can do is take it one day at a time, truly. I know the holidays are difficult, especially the first year you lose a loved one. Do whatever you need to do. (We're going out of state by ourselves for Christmas, I just can't handle being home this year without Dad.) Pattyrnma, I wish you peace and blessings.
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I lost my daughter Diana during surgery on April 10, 2017. I lost my daughter Julie 18 years ago in a fatal automobile accident. Out of 4 children I have two surviving. My sister died 2-1/2 years ago. My husband died 22 years ago. My father died after an overdose on Elavil many years ago. I have been in grief counseling a number of times. Currently I am with a counselor who is a gift from God. I am a deeply faith based orthodox Catholic Christian. I have times when it is as if nothing has happened and I go on with my life. Other times, like last night, I became a ball of pain and simply want to die. I woke up this morning somewhat better. I read Max Lucado who is a wonderful Christian writer and he helps. Right now I cannot go near Diana's death. She was precious beyond life to me. I alternate between living normally and then I agonize. All the suggestions were good but I can say with a certainty the my life has been changed irrevocably. I will never recover fully. All I can do is wait on the Lord.
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Oh, Yogagirl! I'm so sorry to hear about your good, sweet dad!
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I'm so sorry to read of your father's passing. And I don't know whether your mother's lack of awareness makes it better or worse for you - glad she isn't grieving, hollowed out that she can't, perhaps?

Take care of yourself as you come to terms, wishing comfort to you and your family.
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Dear yogagirl,

My deepest sympathies and condolences. I'm very sorry for your loss. Thinking of you and your family during this difficult time.
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Hi dear friends,
My sweet, loving, daddy passed peacefully today at 3pm.
He spent 2 days struggling for breath in the ER.
Mom's Alzheimers is advanced so she won't be sad.
I loved him so much.
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Patooski - in regard to the not wanting to socialize, I do understand that, but I'm also an introvert. I socialize sometimes, but I also need alone time in order to re-charge. Are you an introvert? I also think that grief makes us way more sensitive. Maybe it's just me, but I think it's ok to keep to yourself for a season. People tend to want us to "just get over it" way too quickly, and it's hard to attend events and force a smile, when all you want to do is cry. (And this is speaking from past experiences, not just the current one.)

Gershun, if you make that movie, will you please cast my sister as the glaring one? She's perfect for the part! LOL... I have an aunt that's a hoot, though, she'll be the one oblivious to the tension, dancing around the table. And probably drunk. ;)

SueC - I'm really sorry about your mom and your son. Those are two incredibly tough things to deal with. I hope you have people you can lean on for support!
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Personally, there came a point for me when I just didn't want to grieve anymore. I made a conscious choice to stop going over what happened and how I felt about it. Keeping it all fresh in my mind was literally hardwiring my brain around grief and keeping me stuck in grief. There was a time for grief and, for me, a time for letting go of the grief and honoring the memory of the deceased by living a good life.
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I haven't read all of the thread, will do that soon. But the original post resonated with me...(if you were told not to cry, if you're having nightmares, etc...)

Yes, I'm having nightmares. Have had them since Dad passed. Ugh. I'm exhausted! I tend to dream a lot anyway, but this is ridiculous. My husband and I plan to take a couple days off this week, and just re-charge and try to de-stress. We're going to a grief support group that's starting soon, as well. Hopefully that will help.

And...Dad's memorial was yesterday, and when I went up to thank one of the church members for his help, he told me he doesn't understand why people cry at funerals, and we should be happy instead. Ummm, what? Yeah, he said that. At Dad's FUNERAL! Made me feel like crap, as I had obviously been crying quite a bit. I'm trying not to let it get to me, but why the h3ll do people say stuff like that to the FAMILY, at a funeral???? Grrrr....

On the flip side, everyone else was amazing, and so many people shared their memories of Dad with us. I'm so thankful to the friends and unexpected people who have been supportive! :)
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I know this thread is in reference to loved ones passing away but grief can also be an emotion for the living.
I am grieving for my mother, in the end stages of Alzheimer's and I'm grieving for my son who has made some awful choices for his life and is paying the consequences. They haven't died but my grief is none the less there. It seems to kick up its heels at times and I have periods of despair. I know I can't change a thing in either one of their lives, so, as they say, I've got to "keep on keeping on".

I pray for them, I pray for me. This forum has been a lifesaver (with support for my mom's dementia). Unfortunately, when I tried a forum for my son's problem, it brought the pain to the surface and made it worse. Same thing happens if I read books about coping with his problem. It's better, for now, to bury it so it doesn't hurt so much.
I'm not suicidal but I await the day I go to Heaven and no longer experience any negative human emotion. In the mean time, I've got a lot of plans for retirement.

Like patooski said, grief is really something.
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Dear Gershun, Ha - thanks for all you wrote. Sometimes I think I am just feeling sorry for myself. And then I feel guilty for that. Well, I am trying to get some kind of life back. In an old relationship that hasn't been that great and questioning that and so many other things. Life suddenly got more serious. Sometimes I feel like I am watching myself from a distance. Well, I'd like to see your movie!
P.
I did read somewhere that your adrenaline goes so high when in the caretaking situation and then when it's over, there's nothing. And it's a physical letdown. The whole experience can affect your stress hormones, immunity - everything. So I am hoping this is just normal and will pass. But I know that I am different than I was before this. Grief is really something.
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Patooski, I relate. I think it's natural as we get older to not want to interact anymore. Maybe, I'm wrong but sometimes it's such an effort. Especially at this time of year. All the phony, forced Christmas gaiety. The endless Christmas movies. I never liked them but now since Mom died I really don't like them. I think one day I am going to write a screenplay for a realistic Christmas movie where the in-laws' fight and people glare at each other and eat and drink too much and say how they really feel. No offense to those of you who love Christmas and can't wait for the holidays. I'm just not one of them.

But Patooski, I think you should not give up on yourself. Seventy is still pretty young. Why not try to make it happy or if not happy, at least tolerable. :)
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I find I don't want to socialize at all. This happened immediately after my father died and the neighbors wanted me to come over as I had occasionally in the past. I didn't want to go. It has been over a year now and I still don't really want to spend time with people that I used to be friends with. I am close to some sisters and a boyfriend and that is all I can handle (barely) right now. I really feel like I can barely handle anything. Every little thing is an effort.
I have an appointment with a therapist - finally I did make one - but I wonder if I should even go. So many things seem wrong with me and my life but I am approaching 70 and wonder if it is worth it.
I am sad that I could not do more. Anyone else feeling this way, especially the not wanting to socialize?
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