Another friend of mine died last week. This one felt completely unexpected, this person was a superb nurse and wonderful person, extraordinary in fact, as she and her husband were raising their grandchildren. Cancer attacked her a few years ago, and took her out of the nursing world. She was so talented and giving and bright and alive in her years, and it doesn’t seem fair.
Grief is what we first feel when someone we knows dies, and sometime later we begin mourning. Most of the ceremonies of death occur when the person is still in grief. There is no set period of mourning, we must each do it in our own ways. I can truly and honestly say that when my grandmother died unexpectedly when I was 11, and in my mind, she was my mother, that it took me at least 19 years to complete my mourning and move on in my life.
Mourning is taking the time to allow our feelings, whatever they are. Yes, we may have to put on the masks of life to function during work and required social situations, but we have to put aside the time we need to mourn. Because it’s uncomfortable for others to see us sad, they try to distract, or we try to distract ourselves. But it’s a good thing to do to say I need to take some time alone to be with my sadness right now, I will let you know when I’m ready to …… Wouldn’t it be so much more loving for friends and family to just come be with us and let us feel how we feel? Yesterday, I didn’t really reach out to anyone about how sad I was feeling, but I got very lucky yesterday. I got three unexpected phone calls from people who I ordinarily need to be the one to call, I felt like the universe received my message of hurting yesterday and reached out to me and it felt like an amazing gift
Sadness and grief and mourning are all feelings we have too. There aren’t only good and bad feelings, and we have to be ok with feeling all our normal feelings. We have be allowed to mourn and be given and take the time it takes to mourn so we can move on in our own way when we’re ready. That’s the gift you really give someone who is mourning, allowing them to feel bad and just being there for them.