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Death will come into each of our lives.

Updated on August 4, 2016

Why is this happening to me? What did I do to make this happen? Do you hear that song it was our song.

There are five stages of grieving the death of a friend, lover, family member, public figure or even a pet. It will not matter who we are or how much money or fame we have. We will need to work through these stages. These stages are:

1. Denial

2. Anger

3.Bargaining

4. Depression

5. Acceptance.


How to find the place to start our process?

Remember the old adage 'there is two things certain in life death and taxes'. If we live long enough we will certainly experience loss. We can get you through this. Frequently in a marriage, one spouse passes before the other. And many times the living spouse will also pass within a few months to a couple of years. There is even a diagnosis for this 'Broken Heart Syndrome' that is recognized by the American Medical Association. This diagnosis does not have specificity to be only between spouses. Adult children frequently have depression surrounding the loss of a parent. This is especially true if the child is extremely close to the parent. And grieving is an emotion that requires us to do emotional work. There are five stages of grieving. And when we allow ourselves to get stuck in the process of grieving it may be time for some professional help. And when I say 'professional' this may come from a grief counselor, a Hospice worker, perhaps a person educated in grief from the religious affiliation the person attends. Some of these may cost money and others will not.

There is absolutely no shame in searching out the help of a Grief Specialist. Many families undertake this kind of help together. Many people chose to have this type of help. Frequently, there is a feeling of 'we do not share with others outside the immediate family' or we are unaware of what others will judge us for. The important for all of us to remember is there is no 'right' way to work through a death of another. others talk of death or simply don’t talk about it at all.

Keeping a journal is often the helpful to see the progress we are making. Sometimes we can work through our feelings by physical exercise (I am aware pf many people using this). However, the most important thing is to listen to our minds and body. There is absolute, way to feel or individual steps to walk for this healing to happen. If when entering a room something triggers a wonderful memory and at the same time we are aware this will never happen again. There will be tears or a feeling of having to catch our breath. Allow the mind and body to help you through this. Should we find it is easier not to get out of bed for a short period of time (say an extra hour or two) this is part of the process. However, if staying in bed is beginning to take a longer time or if we desire to keep our blinds closed for more than a short time, it would be entirely worthwhile to consult a counselor. The important thing is to keep trying to work through the emotions and don't keep them bottled up inside. We each can look at our life and see something that will help us, but perhaps we are just too close to the problem.

It is important for us to remember other family and friends are in a different place in their grieving process. We should honor this difference and allow them to proceed at their own pace. Sometimes this is the best way for us to work our grief.

To sum up this article we need to remember there are 5 stages to death and everyone will need to go through each one to truly heal. A person who is terminally ill (whether from cancer, heart failure, pneumonia or other ailments) will need to go through the same 5 stages. We must try to remember this and not ignore their presence in this journey. A pillow I once saw 'Aging is not for wimps'. Don't ever lose the courage to take the next step in healing. This is so important for you as well as each member of your family or friends. Just as important for us to remember to work through the next step is to remember there is a rainbow at the end of our journey.

There is a feeling of grace and calm.
There is a feeling of grace and calm. | Source

What does it mean?

Just to be sure we can recognize the five stages of grief, let's look a little more closely at these stages. To recognize how they may be presented to in everyday life - lets try these sentiments.

1. Denial - They (medical professionals) made a mistake. OR I can beat this, no need to worry.

2. Anger - Why me? OR I should have listened to her. She was right.

3.Bargaining - Please let me beat this thing and I will not drink another day in my life. OR Please don't take her I will do anything.

4. Depression - Go away! I just need a little more sleep. OR I am not hungry. OR I can't go on without him/her.

5. Acceptance. OK I can make the best of this time. OR I will need to get all my affairs in order. OR I must see these people before I die. I want to clear the air between us.

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    • MGWriter profile image
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      Marsha Caldwell 12 months ago from Western Washington State

      Thanks for your comments Denise. As I am working with clients and paraprofessionals alike this kind of article seems to be very helpful. My hope is that more people will have a smooth journey through this part of our lives.

    • denise.w.anderson profile image

      Denise W Anderson 12 months ago from Bismarck, North Dakota

      Thanks for writing this. I am trying to help a friend who has a son that is addicted to drugs. She is really having a tough time and we finally figured out that she is grieving what "could have been" if things were different. As I look at these stages, I can see that she has already been through the denial, anger and bargaining, and now is in the depression stage. Now, I know what to do to help her.