It is impossible to give grief a finite definition just like it is impossible to give love a finite definition. Everyone’s loss is unique, dynamic, and complicated. Describing the personal process of grief is often overwhelming and isolating. One important aspect of grief is that there is not a wrong or a right way to grieve, it is personal and following your heart is often the best guidance.
Having good support with the grief process helps allow us to figure out our narrative and should also include having agency and resources that are available for us through this journey. Experts and research have shown that relationships and social connection are considered crucial factors while going through the grieving process.
During the grieving process it is not unusual for an individual’s identity to be transformed. While adapting to these new identity changes and figuring out the personal meaning of grief, it is valuable to have feedback and connection in relationships and community.
Having agency and connection helps us to formulate and honor our grief with others who are also witnessing our journey and giving it value.
“In the end we do not grieve on our own, nor do we make meaning about death in isolation. We do so in communities and in relationships with others” (Valentine, 2006)
Finding connection while grieving, captures our journey and gives it meaning.Introducing our loved ones and our losses to others opens a new chapter and allows us to create understanding to the parts of us that need to be honored. Here are a few ways to begin to navigate the grieving process.
1.Support groups are beneficial and encouraged. If at some point in your grief you feel ready to seek out other ways to navigate the grief process, I would highly recommend a group that fits your needs and your level of comfort.
2. Journaling is a common practice, and many coaches and practitioners encourage it. There are many types of journaling, and it can be an incredible outlet for emotions and a sacred place to keep personal thoughts.
3.Continue to celebrate or acknowledge birthdays or anniversaries and find new ways to honor what you loved and shared with your loved one. Honoring meaning of your memories has value in the grieving process.
4. Most importantly remember self care: Hydrate, and lots of rest.
I pray that you find peace in your days ahead and your journey through grief.