Bereavement

"Blessed are they who mourn, for they will be comforted."  Matthew 5:4

 

Six Helpful Things to Do

 

  • Think About Your Loss. Relive experiences in your thoughts. Allow the details and the emotions that come with them to be fully expressed. Explore memories as they come up. Trust that your system is bringing up these thoughts as part of your healing process. The repetition of painful memories helps flush out the strong emotions attached to them.

     

  • Talk About Your Loss. There is much release in talking about your losses. You may need to tell the same stories over and over as part of your healing. You may need to talk about your losses for a long time but wonder if anyone wants to hear about it anymore. Support groups are a place where you will always have the opportunity to be heard.

     

  • Write About Your Loss. Keeping a journal isn't for everyone, but it can be a powerful tool for healing. Writing about feelings and events can help you to focus and identify emotions. Words can constructively channel fear and pain and can create a record of your progress. There are some good books available on keeping a journal if you are unsure of how to start.

     

  • Cry About Your Loss. Tears can relieve a lot of pressure. Learn to trust your body's needs to cry or not to cry. There will be both wet spells and dry spells while you are grieving. Individuals use tears differently so respect your own relationship to tears. Be sure that you aren't telling yourself that tears mean that you are weak or out of control.

     

  • Make Space For Your Loss. Sometimes people lose their routines when someone dies and may feel that they have too much unstructured time in which to grieve. Others are so busy that they need to create quiet moments in which to work with their feelings. Sometimes you need a down day just to sit with your loss. Other days, you may feel the need to be as busy as possible. Respecting your needs for healing time and creating opportunities to grieve is important.

     

  • Take Care of Your Health After Your Loss. Do your best to get adequate food and rest. If you're due for a physical or have put off some health screening or follow-up, make an appointment. Exercise can release a surprising amount of tension, anger and frustration. Try to get out of doors in the fresh air.

 

This handout was developed by Kansas City Hospice, underwritten by Prime Health Foundation I:\HOSPJCE\BERVMT\Berv Vol Train Manual