Stages of Grief

By: Natalie Lamb

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Coping with Death is never easy!
"I will turn their mourning into gladness. I will give them
comfort and joy instead of sorrow."
~Jeremiah 31:13~
".... that we may be able to comfort them which are in trouble,
by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God."
~2 Corinthians 1:3-4~

Although I could have used this as an opportunity to talk about the joy of the holiday, I have chosen to deal with a subject that is often not talked about during the holidays.  Having been touched or slapped with the loss of my mother in particular because it was the hardest; but also the loss of other very special friends and family, I know what it is to grieve during the holidays.  For those who have not dealt with this burden, this is not for you.  But I am sure there is someone in your life that has felt this pain and maybe this will help you help them.  I have composed from various sources articles on grief and how to deal with grief during the holidays.  I hope this helps you make it through the holiday season but also through the journey of grief. 

Please do not be embarrassed or ashamed that you feel pain and sorrow, whether the person has been gone for a month or 10 years.  With time the pain does diminish but if they held a place in your heart, that place will always be empty.  What has helped me to cope is that I have accepted the fact that there will always be a hole in my heart in the shape of my mother and this is my new normal.  When I stopped trying to make it go away was when I was able to say that this is a part of my journey and I am ok with that.  I hope these articles help you in some way, even if it is just to say what you are feeling is normal.  If you feel you need help please go get it!!  If you need someone to talk to, please email me or look for a grief counselor in your area. 

There are stages of grief which you must go through to be healed and be able to deal with your loss. You may not necessarily go through them in order. Some people go through some stages at the same time. But you will go through them nevertheless.

1. denial and isolation
2. anger
3. bargaining
4. depression
5. acceptance

"Good Grief" - By G.E. Westberg lists 10 stages of Grief:
1. We Are In a State of Shock
2. We Express Emotion
3. We Feel Depressed and Very Lonely
4. We May Experience Physical Symptoms
5. We May Become Panicky
6. We Feel a Sense of Guilt About The Loss
7. We are Filled with Anger and Resentment
8. We Resist Returning
9. Gradually Hope Comes Through
10. We Struggle to Affirm Reality

The Four Tasks of Mourning - By William Worden

1. To accept the reality of the loss
2. To experience the pain of grief
3. To adjust to an environment in which the deceased is missing
4. To withdraw emotional energy and reinvest it in another relationship