Grief Hurts, But You're Not Alone. (2023)
By, Ashley Lee
NOTE: I am not a certified expert specialized in grief counseling or anything relevant to the subject matter. This is a subjective piece detailing personal experience.
If you need any assistance during this difficult time, please consult with someone you trust.
I know it's tough right now, and you want to be alone.
I get that, and it's fine.
But before you go off and wonder where to go from here, know that you're not alone. Yes, it's obvious as everyone deals with this, but let me connect with you on a personal level. Perhaps this is something that will bring you some form of comfort in knowing that I can deeply empathize with you.
5 Years Ago
Without giving you who this person was, I was very close to them.
This person saw me grow up with their very own eyes and helped raise me to be who I am today.
They would drop me off at school, take me on road trips or overseas, show me different cultures besides my own and respect them, try all kinds of foods, and really just open my mind.
But the one thing that this person did for me was simply being there when I needed them.
Throughout the years I was with this person, part of me knew that I would have to deal with their permanent absence as I got older. Those thoughts weren't good to me, but I had to keep my eyes and ears open and prepare. They were a little older when I came into this world, but age doesn't matter here- their character did.
I had a happy childhood and absorbed a lot of innocence into my life. I felt good (never invincible) as if nothing could stop me, but as I approached my mid-teens, I had to grow up and change.
Months after I graduated high school and started college, the storm clouds approached.
Towards the end of my first semester, my loved one was admitted to the hospital with an illness. I was told that the condition was serious, but my mind took it as if they'll get better, things will be back to normal, and let's move on from that.
Their health deteriorated, and I was faced with the difficult decision to accept that they weren't coming back...
...For the first few days, I felt numb. I sobbed constantly before they died, but the sadness stayed.
To keep myself busy, I continued my studies in college as a means of escapism from the heavy precipitation that flooded my mind.
People supported and comforted me during the hardships, and I reflect with appreciation. It's good to have a lot of people in your life just so you know who will really be there for you during your best, worst, and/or even in-between times.
The pain still hurts me, but I continue to walk.
With this loss, it didn't stop me from pursuing my career. I know that my loved one would have been satisfied knowing that I chose responsibility over its opposite in a heartbeat. They set the example for me, and now I'll continue that.
Grief hurts, but you're not alone.
From common knowledge, the five stages of grief are denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance.
To tell you the truth, you may not even deal with all of these five stages. Each mind functions differently.
With me, it's more of denial, anger, depression, and acceptance. I don't even recall a moment where I bargained with someone while grieving.
And get this, don't expect to move on so quickly, because it doesn't always work that way. Feel your heart pounding and tell me what you feel. I know the truth is inside there.
Take the time you need to process this loss.
Plus, if you dealt with these five stages, you may find yourself going from depression to anger or denial straight to acceptance at multiple points in your life. It's normal to feel that way. Believe me.
Another loved one told me before that people grieve in different ways. This is something that others need to respect. If they don't give you any hint of care, I will let you figure out what you can do with people who display those kinds of behaviors. It's not your problem.
Please remember that your loved one(s) would have wanted you to continue living your life.
I hope that this article gives you some comfort in knowing that you're not in the dark by yourself.
Please take it easy. Time will slowly take away the pain but know that some parts of it will remain as you live.
I wish you well and take care.
This photo is an original. Please don't reproduce nor use without my permission.