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Coming to Terms with the Loss of a Loved One

Updated on July 10, 2012

Many of us, perhaps even most of us, have lost someone who was very close to us; someone who will dreaded losing. It could be parent, sibling, child, uncle, aunt, spouse, or a very close friend, but when we lose them, the reality is truly horrible to even imagine, let alone go through. When something like this happens, the amount of shock that suddenly hits you is almost unbearable to the point where you just have to lay down and wrap your mind around it. Days will go by though and each and every morning you wake up, you relive the same horrible shock of losing your family member or loved one. It takes time to truly accept that you will never see this person again on this world and the amount of varied emotions you go through makes that reality even harder.

Before I go on, I would like to express my deepest sympathies and condolences to anyone reading this who has suffered a great loss. I know it's hard and even unbearable at times, but just remember to stay strong because you can get through this; never think otherwise. My family recently suffered a horrible loss a couple of months ago, the details I won't go into because I'm sure you know how it feels and don't need anymore bad news, but it can be very hard to go through life without this person. There are ways you can help yourself to get through it all though however and keep the memory of your loved one a positive one.

For me, one of the things that helped me the most was visiting the place where they were put to rest. I would take a couple of hours out of my day once a week and drive to the cemetery and just stand in front of the grave and talk for quite a long time actually. This really does help because you are still communicating in a way to your loved one and are able to get some of your emotions out. Sometimes, talking out loud can really help things come into focus and allows you to still have a relationship with the person you lost. Pay them respect every once and a while and try talking to them; it helps to understand just how you feel and how much you miss them.

That can help, but the amount of pain is still very unbearable and you wish to just get away from it all sometimes. There is really only one way to truly get away from that pain and that is sleep. When you sleep you really are just leaving the world behind and going into one of comfort and solitude. I know some people don't have time to sleep whenever they want, but try to find the time to take a nap every now and then and just relax. It really does help and this is where you could have what my family calls "Goodbye Dreams" where you have the ability to still see your loved ones in dreams and have some truly surreal moments. I have had a few of these dreams and the incredible thing is, they really are relevant to your situation.

I had a dream where my family member was talking to me about what occurred after their death and how everyone else was doing and it was a dream that truly felt real. When you wake up, you feel as though you were just paid a visit by your loved one. It may seem mystical and out there, but I know dozens of people who have experienced this very same thing, whether it was during a nap or even an eight hour sleep at night into morning. Always remember that you could have these dreams and have some last moments with your loved ones. I can't explain it, but it seems like they are truly still with you and watching over you.

Another great way to better deal with such a hard situation is to remember all the great times you had with them and talk about them with your friends and family. Share some laughs as you remember particularly funny or great moments and remember just what this person contributed to the family and you. This will make you feel much better because you are focusing your mind and energy on remembering some great and funny moments you had with this person and become grateful that you had them in your life. Always keeping an upbeat attitude towards this person and the aspects you remember about them will lessen the shock and the negative feelings that surface whenever you think about the day you lost them.

Along with this, try to find some really nice pictures of him or her and hang them up in your room, keeping their memory in a positive light and where you can see them whenever you wake up or go to bed. Your loved one will never truly die as long as you have memories to keep his or her legacy alive forever. As I write this, I am glancing over to pictures of the person my family lost every now and then on the wall beside me and get a very comforting feeling. These pictures portray this person in a very positive light and harken back the great memories they represent and ones that I had with them. This will once again also help you to appreciate the great times you shared with them and keep their memory a positive one.

Another important piece of advice I can give to everyone is do not bottle un your emotions and keep them hidden from everyone else. Talking about the great moments you had with your loved one is very important, but don't try to keep your sorrow bottled up because that can truly tear you apart on the inside. You will always have your days and moments where things such seem empty; when that happens, try to let your emotions come out in full force because it will help you and it is much more healthy. Everyone has different ways of letting their emotions come out, whether it through crying or just talking to others.

Let others know just what is on your mind and trust in them to console you and help you in your time of need. Above all else, remember that you still have friends and loved ones who will always be there to get you through this hard time. There will always be those days where you particularly miss the person you lost and where you just need some time to let your emotions out or let them be heard; doing either will help you get through that day. Try to find someone or something to put your faith into and just count on them to help you out when you are in need; don't let yourself get torn apart by your own emotions and don't try to handle it by yourself. Let others in to help you and remember that you are not alone even after suffering this great loss.

These are some of ways I personally found to be very helpful during such hard times that I believe can be applied to everyone is some shape or form. There is no way to truly make this time in your life easy, but there are certainly ways to help you get through it. Stay strong and surround yourself by friends and family who will always be there to help you out. Keep the memory of your loved one in great spirits and remember all the great times you had with them. Let your emotions out and be heard and have faith that everything will be fine in the end. You will always miss them, but one day, you will come to terms with this hard reality and always remember your loved one as a great part of your life where you fortunate enough to have them. I sincerely hope that this has helped some of you and I am so sorry for your loss. Please try to take care and remember to stay strong.


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