Grief and Bereavement

Grief and Bereavement

Leo Tolstoy, the greatest writer of all times quoted… “Only people who are capable of loving strongly can also suffer great sorrow, but this same necessity of loving serves to counteract their grief and heals them.” 

 To love and to be loved, by far has been the greatest gift of life. Nothing more precious or rewarding; when that screeches to a grinding halt and ceases forever, the pain is unspeakable and unbearable, measured to the likes of a limb being cut off from the body. The very existence is questioned in keeping with the now non-existence of the one who loved and was loved.

As much as grief appears to be a natural emotional response and qualifies as one, simply because it is based on our feeling and not our understanding, it is also an experience or a process that is overwhelming, painful and tiring for the bereaved.  The enormous pain engulfs and permeates the inner most being. The head takes a back seat and the heart works overtime taking along with it the mind that churns out numerous thoughts…thoughts as to why one had to be in this relationship if it had to end in death, was it all for nothing? Wasn’t there something that could have been done to make it last for eternity?  It meant everything….it was the very Why of Life.

Most times as days pass and with a desire to cope with the loss, you wait believing in what you are told….”time is a great healer”; that may well seem coming true or could only get you to realise that it isn’t so.  Deep love that builds strong bonds etches a place for the loved one in your soul. When the person is gone forever from the physical realm, what are only left behind are memories every waking moment, taking you to that space which is now empty.  But, those very memories can help you focus on the happy times, the precious moments, the many events and the love that was shared, bringing in meaning, beauty and sweetness to that relationship or life lived together, which you may have taken for granted.  So, looking back with a sense of gratitude for what preceded the loss, celebrating that life which touched yours and made meaning, can help one come to a point of acceptance and moving on.

Grief is expressed in different ways, it could be emotional numbness, crying, shutting oneself up completely, expressing anger, self-blaming and, there could be accompanying physical changes too in some. Everybody grieves in their own way and they take their own time before they begin to cope with their loss, move on and learn to live beyond. The bereaved grapple with sorrow, pain, may be loneliness; a host of feelings are associated to grief but, acknowledging those feelings, sharing it with someone or speaking about it and, helping oneself to work with his or her feelings will gradually and eventually bring in healing. Though the ache would always be there, the emptiness will slowly pass and, we then move on to respect and appreciate the gift of life itself, for it was life that we cherished…the life of the person we loved and lost.

If you find yourself unable to move through your grief on your own and need assistance, please  reach out for professional help. We at LeanonMe will be happy to help you.


AUTHOR: Portia , Lead Counsellor


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