Guide to Managing Grief
3 Grief Resources to get you through the hard times
Grief, the the thing that everyone experiences and no one wants to go through. Myself included. I remember when I first got the call during the beginning of COVID that my mom was in the hospital and we couldn't visit her and had no idea what was going on. We would be given bits of information here and there but were completely in the dark. Within a moments time I went from life as normal to grief becoming my companion for less than a year, as we navigated her death sentence of brain cancer.
As I navigated this unexpected journey I came across some resources alongside therapy that helped me navigate the journey of grief. I come to you today to share such resources to bring some grounding within the storm. I love Megan Devine's quote on grief:
"Some things in life cannot be fixed. They can only be carried."
There's no expectations that you are going to accept the loss however with some resources and assistance you can begin the journey of grief and heal the broken part of your heart as you reorganize in this new normal.
Grief is a very personal experience in which we all travel through differently. I will not attempt to either compare my grief with yours, have a grief competition or tell you everything is going to be okay. I will say that heathy grief requires movement. As my pastor said during the thick of my grief "It's okay to feel your feelings, just don't get stuck in them." I don't want you to get stuck in your grief neither. Counseling is my recommendation along with the following resources I used as part of my grief journey and then some others I have found through my professional channels. I hope you find them to be useful as you navigate your new normal and put the pieces of your heart back together.
#1: Book Recommendations
#2: Online Resources
#3: Support Groups
Your own path through grief: A workbook for your journey to recovery by Jill A. Johnson-Young LCSW
It's OK That You're Not OK: Meeting Grief and Loss in a Culture That Doesn't Understand by Megan Devine
How to Carry What Can't Be Fixed: A Journal for Grief by Megan Devine
We need to change how we talk about dying, death, grief, and dementia. Jill is my hands down go to person on all things grief. Her knowledge and experience is invaluable. Be sure to check out all her resources and podcasts regarding grief.
Grief is incredibly lonely. Finding your community is the one thing Megan can guarantee will make this easier on you. Companionship and kinship are your survival. Megan's candid style of talking about grief is warm and necessary. There were so many times that I laughed, cried and felt normalized in my experience either from listening to her podcast, reading her book or completing the journaling assignments.
For those who filter life through faith here are a collection of recourses from Focus on the Family.
I found grief.com through my professional channels. He's know for his expertise on grief and teaching the secrets to living a happy and fulfilled life even after a loss. He is the author of six books, including the new bestselling book, Finding Meaning: The Sixth Stage of Grief. His website contains a wealth of information worth exploring and learning.
Many of my clients and family have spoken on their positive experiences in Grief Share. Support groups are not for everyone however you won't know till you try it out for a month or two. You don't need to feel isolated in your grief or sit alone in your questions. A support group can provide companionship and connection during these confusing times as they provide a safe space to talk and share your feelings and experiences. GriefShare groups meet weekly to help you face these challenges and move toward rebuilding your life.
The pain that results from the death of a loved one can be excruciating. This pain takes on both physical and emotional manifestations. The pain of grief grips each of us differently. Grief work is in essence a thorough and on-going review process. It is very repetitive, takes a long time, and is never fully or finally accomplished, but the intensity of the pain does lessen and the frequency intermittent. Those that would like to talk and share their feelings in a safe place where confidentiality is very important are welcome and encouraged to attend.
The Bereavement Group meets every Monday morning from 10:00 a.m. until 11:30 am in the Parish Center Library.
Remember grief is personal and is a journey. There is not a quick fix to grief and you will not magically learn how to accept it overnight. There is no wrong and right way to grieve you just need to be able to move through it and reorganize. Below is a video to share with friends in order that they can come alongside you during this time of grief.
Yvette E. McDonald is the owner and counselor at Traveling Light Counseling, a practice for individuals, couples and families helping them discover the person/couple they were always meant to be, as they become the best version of self in their roles and relationships in the Port Saint Lucie and Martin County area. She specializes in all things relationship. Relationship with self, others and children.