The news of death or witnessing death elicits a natural response. There is emotional suffering attached to knowing your closest person is no more. Often the pain is excruciating, indescribable, complex, and unexpected. Usually, it’s a rollercoaster of emotions from anger or shock to guilt, profound sadness, and disbelief. The pain of grief can impact overall body health, sleeping, eating, and thought processes.
The process of grief
The grief over the death of a beloved changes your perspective of life and your worldview, Things are never the same. It takes time, commitment, and strength to look into the future. The process could entail;
Denial: “ Why me, it shouldn’t be me.”
Anger: “ Why should this happen? Whom do I blame.”
Bargaining: “ If you take this away, I will…
Depression: “ I feel numb and sad about anything.”
Acceptance: “ I have come to terms with what happened.”
There are several myths associated with grief here in Kenya. Some of these are:
Myth; The pain will ‘fade away’ when ignored.
Myth; You must express yourself by crying to signify you are sorry for the loss
Myth; By the first death anniversary, it should have faded
Myth: You need to forget the loss to move on
The truth is there will always be triggers for the loss of the beloved, such as birthdays, anniversaries, and other milestones that will trigger emotions. So, prepare in advance to:
- Accept the pain
- Accept the triggers for grief and the unexpected
- Understand the process of grief
- Seek help from support groups and support systems
- Support yourself by taking care of yourself physically
Grief is individualistic, and there is no wrong or proper manner to grief. Other factors come into play when coping with grief. Such of these are faith, life experience, the intensity of the loss. Most of the time, the magnitude of the loss is directly proportional to the intensity of suffering. Certainly, grieving time depends on an individual, and it happens gradually- there is no time frame.