Glenda Law - Tips for Overcoming Grief
Read more from Glenda here
Heartfelt thanks to all of you who have sent me messages regarding my first article for GrownUps. It brings it home more than ever just how many people need some support and encouragement dealing with the losses we have throughout our lives.
I’m replying to two of your letters this time.Firstly to Annette who asks, “What are some tips to try and overcome grief please?”
Thank you, Annette.
You sound as though your loss has been a recent one. My initial tip is to be kind to yourself. If you feel like doing something special or indulging yourself to make yourself feel better then do so. Don’t feel guilty because you are feeling this way. A visit to the hairdresser, beauty salon or enjoying a good massage is a way of relaxing the body and switching off your mind for a while. Bereavement is not only emotional. It can also take a physical toll on the body. Make sure you keep eating regularly, especially if you are trying to cook for one. If you have lost your appetite, snack on small nourishing foods or soup. This is a good time for chocolate!
Many times people are left focusing on the last day or days of the loved ones life and this is not the best kind of memory to be concentrating on. There will be many memories throughout the lives of the one who has left so try to keep these happy ones foremost in your mind. The mind is an amazing thing and it can be re-programmed. As soon as a sad or unhappy thought surfaces, say “I won’t think about that now, I will think about the time we...” and replace it with a memory that was happy or made you laugh together. Of course you will still feel sad and that is ok too. If your loved one has had a long illness, try to feel grateful that the suffering is over for them. If it was a sudden death, the same in reverse can be said. At least they didn’t suffer too long. Using positive thoughts to replace negative ones are a great healer. It just takes some practice.
Never have regrets about the way you dealt with things while your loved one was ill or for things that were said or left unsaid. Each person deals with things the best way they know how to at the time and there is no right and wrong way of doing things. Remember that death comes to us all eventually and acceptance is the goal to have from now on.
Much love to you, Annette,GlendaFrom Marg - Hi Glenda, My husband my very best friend passed away nine weeks ago with cancer. It was a very sad two months nursing him. It is a very hard time to get through. The biggest is disbelief. I have lovely photos of him around the house. I wear a locket with his photo in. I have affirmations I say every day. I light a candle under his photo every night. Little things bring the tears. I must let go of my sorrow and hold onto my love for him, and give thanks for the years I had with him and be ever so thankful for the time I had with him.
My condolences to you and thanks for taking the time to write. Some people say when they have lost a loved one after an illness that there was at least time to say things you needed to say and an opportunity to “get things in order”. Cancer is a terrible disease and the worst part of it for you was watching your beloved husband suffer with it. I’m sure he felt your love and was grateful for the care you would have given to him during the last weeks of his life. You were both lucky to have experienced this great love for each other. The hardest part for you now is not to let loneliness take over. Don’t be afraid to call upon friends and family to help get you through this time. Many times after a death people are a bit hesitant to reach out to you thinking they may be intruding. Let them all know that you want to talk (and make sure you do) about your husband, remembering the good times you had and put aside the last sad weeks as that was not what made most of your memories together.
Take a few tips from the answer to Annette and be kind to yourself. Make an effort to do a few things to pamper your body and soothe your mind. Meditation and music will help.
Take care and much love to you Marg, Glenda