The service is over; people have stopped calling and sending cards.
Now the reality sets in. The day-to-day, missing the person.
Grieving is like slogging up-hill through six inches of mud in the rain;
then occasionally hitting a patch where there isn't as much mud and the sun comes out for a little while, only to be covered by the next group of clouds.
It comes in waves, sometimes for a few days or even a week, the sky seems to clear and there is some dry ground and it may, just be, ok, but then, no, it's not - a memory, a song,
a something, pushes through, and the rain and slogging continues. This is Grief.
It's normal to cry and ache and feel lost in the fog when a loved one is gone from your life.
Be gentle with yourself.
Take the time You need, rest.
Drink water (crying can dehydrate you).
Take tylenol* (grief hurts).
Eat a bit of protein (keep your strength up).
Small tasks - don't push yourself.
Understand that there are five stages of grief and you may go through them cyclically:
Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression, Acceptance. And this will take, as long as it takes.
Be gentle with yourself in each stage.
Grieve at your own pace.
Grieve in your own way.
Take the time You need.
Don't allow anyone to push you faster than you are ready to go -
it's your loss and Your process.
Do, please take care of yourself and ask for support as you need it.
If you just don't have the energy (and you may not) to do something, and it can wait - don't do it - let it wait.
If it really must be done, ask for help.
Things are different now, and if it's a holiday and you don't feel up to "celebrating"
there is no need to force yourself.
Maybe skip Christmas this year; it's OK, if you just can't do it.
Forcing yourself to do what someone else thinks you "should" do, will only make you more miserable.
Allow your own needs to surface; You Know what You need.
Listen to your own inner guidance.
Consider keeping a journal - writing about your experience can help you process feelings that you cannot talk about to anyone else.
Consider taking short walks; moving your body, getting sunshine and fresh air can help you begin to feel a bit better.
Allow yourself all the time you need to process this loss(If you don't, you may get stuck).
You do not have to keep to anyone else's timetable - for anything.
Others may rush or push you to clean out the closet or give away items, move or sell the house.
Please wait - this is Your personal journey - not theirs.
They may mean well but they don't actually know what is best for you, You do.
Give yourself time, pause, wait. Be still.
Adjust to the new reality, then make decisions; your own decisions.
If at any time, the grief becomes so deep that you are considering suicide - please get help.
This is considered "complicated grief" and you need more support.
Please Reach out - Please Call or Text 988 for help, now.
However, if you are just slogging through the mud day after day and it seems as though the sun may come out tomorrow, you are in normal grieving and only time will lessen the sorrow. At some point, you will be able to do a bit more, and feel a bit better, and you will find that though you still love and miss the person every day, you can give yourself permission to begin to return to living life.
*check with your personal health provider.