Sunday, August 31, 2008

5 Stages of Grief - My Personal Loss

Did you ever lose something so precious that your heart ached as if it were broken into tiny pieces?

What if that "something" was "someone"?

I consider myself fairly smart and I knew I was grieving so I did some research on the five stages of grieving; or the grieving process. Did you know that the loss of anything that matters to us can trigger the grieving process?

A pet. Our health. A treasured heirloom or special item. A loved one.

Must a loved one die for us to grieve? I say no. Absolutely not. We can grieve for the loss they leave in our lives and our hearts when they move away. Even when that move is supposed to be temporary. The grief still breaks through and settles around my shoulders like a heavy sweater on a hot day.

I'm in the grieving process. My daughter, son-in-law, and precious granddaughter have moved out of state on a temporary basis. They'll stay with my daughter's father until they can get back on their feet and move back. That's what I have to keep telling myself. It's only temporary and they'll be back home.

I believe I'm still in Stage 1 of the grieving process. Denial and Isolation. I've tried to just pretend that they really haven't gone, that they're still living here. I've definitely withdrawn from my normal social activities, online and offline and have just hidden myself away from the world. I haven't felt like doing much of anything.

Then, there's Stage 2, Anger. The experts say the grieving person may become furious at the person who inflicted the hurt or at the world for letting it happen. I may even become angry at myself for even letting it take place even if there was nothing I could do to stop it.

Now, there's a stumper for you. Was there anything I could do? They couldn't pay their mortgage so their house was being sold. Could we pay their mortgage for them? Not possible. We've done it before, but we couldn't do it on a regular basis. Not for the next six months while my son-in-law healed from brain surgery then went back to work. Would they have been able to move in with us? Again, no. We just don't have the room. We have no empty rooms available. Fortunately, my ex-husband and his wife had two rooms. But they were across the country.

On to Stage 3, Bargaining, making bargains with God by asking "If I do this, will you take away the loss?"

Then, there's Stage 4, Depression. I know what depression feels like. I've lived with nearly all my life. Will this situation slide me into a depressive cycle? That's what my Support Team is for, to help me through it and to keep me from it. I've already talked to my therapist about it and next week I talk to my psychiatrist and physician about it. They'll all be ready to handle any crisis that may occur, if it does.

Finally, Stage 5, Acceptance. This is where I will have finally accepted the reality of my loss and the anger, sadness, and mourning will have gone away.

A person can go through the five stages in a few moments a few hours or even longer. Sometimes it can take years to finish the five stages, if a person finishes them at all. It depends on the person.

I know I'll get through this. My daughter has a goal to come back to Florida, and I believe in that goal. That's what keeps me going every day. That's what helps me with my grieving process.

I want to thank all of my friends and family who have helped me through this entire process before and after my daughter and son-in-law moved. During my son-in-law's surgery, my daughter's crisis, and the rest of their downward spiraling issues. I'll never forget your open hearts and I will always treasure your prayers and good wishes. You've shown me true friendship and support and for that I'll always be humbled by your generosity.

My children have a goal. And, I have a goal too. I'm going to fly out and see them in October. And, I'll keep going to see them, until they come home to stay.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Wisdom from Paul Harvey

Can you answer this riddle?

Here is a pretty neat little thing from Paul Harvey. See if you can guess the riddle at the end.

Paul Harvey Writes:

We tried so hard to make things better for our kids that we made them worse. For my grandchildren, I'd like better.

I'd really like for them to know about hand me down clothes and homemade ice cream and leftover meat loaf sandwiches. I really would.

I hope you learn humility by being humiliated, and that you learn honesty by being cheated.

I hope you learn to make your own bed and mow the lawn and wash the car.

And I really hope nobody gives you a brand new car when you are sixteen.

It will be good if at least one time you can see puppies born and your old dog put to sleep.

I hope you get a black eye fighting for something you believe in.

I hope you have to share a bedroom with your younger brother/sister. And it's all right if you have to draw a line down the middle of the room,but when he wants to crawl under the covers with you because he's scared, I hope you let him.

When you want to see a movie and your little brother/sister wants to tag along, I hope you'll let him/her.

I hope you have to walk uphill to school with your friends and that you live in a town where you can do it safely.

On rainy days when you have to catch a ride, I hope you don't ask your driver to drop you two blocks away so you won't be seen riding with someone as uncool as your Mom.

If you want a slingshot, I hope your Dad teaches you how to make one instead of buying one.
I hope you learn to dig in the dirt and read books.

When you learn to use computers, I hope you also learn to add and subtract in your head.

I hope you get teased by your friends when you have your first crush on a boy/girl, and when you talk back to your mother that you learn what ivory soap tastes like.

May you skin your knee climbing a mountain, burn your hand on a stove and stick your tongue on a frozen flagpole.

I don't care if you try a beer once, but I hope you don't like it.. And if a friend offers you dope or a joint, I hope you realize he is not your friend.

I sure hope you make time to sit on a porch with your Grandma/Grandpa and go fishing with your Uncle.

May you feel sorrow at a funeral and joy during the holidays.

I hope your mother punishes you when you throw a baseball through your neighbor's window and that she hugs you and kisses you at Hannukah/Christmas time when you give her a plaster mold of your hand.

These things I wish for you - tough times and disappointment, hard work and happiness. To me, it's the only way to appreciate life.

Written with a pen. Sealed with a kiss. I'm here for you. And if I die before you do, I'll go to heaven and wait for you.

Paul Harvey RIDDLE:

When asked this riddle, 80% of kindergarten kids got the answer, compared to 17% of Stanford University seniors.

What is greater than God, more evil than the devil, The poor have it, The rich need it, and if you eat it, you'll die?