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Thinking Out Loud:  Six T’s That Can Make Our Lives Easier

Thinking Out Loud:  Six T’s That Can Make Our Lives Easier

   There are six fundamentals of grief recovery, which are very important to the grieving process.  Most people try to avoid them not knowing that they are delaying their healing and advancement to the future.  Let’s examine and evaluate them and apply them also to our situation if we are grieving to see if we are or can implement any of these six great criteria to our grief recovery.

   Time:  We all need time to grieve, but how long it takes depends on the individual.  No one can accurately predict how long it will take for grief healing.  Our friends and family may anticipate and expect a certain time frame.   We may be tempted to set the same expectation that they have for us, but if we try to please others, then our grieving will become unresolved and we will find ourselves confused and unable to move on.  We may feel anger, guilt or depression if we are not able to finish the grieving process.  Let’s take our time to grieve for our cherished loved one until we are comfortable.

   Tears:  Tears are part of the healing process, so do allow ourselves to cry as much as we want.  Let the tears flow and cleanse ourselves of all the emotional burden that comes with grief.  If we are unable to cry in public, find a safe place like our home or a support outreach center or in our car.  Call someone on the phone that will listen to our pain and validate our tears.  It’s so amazing the amount of tears that we shed during grief.  We can cry for simple things, so be sure to drink more water because tears tend to dehydrate us.

   Talk:  This cannot be written or said enough.  Let’s talk as much as we can about our memories of our precious loved one; especially the good ones.  Seek out the people who will listen to us and understand our grief.  A grief support group is a good place to start. Talking helps us to realize the impact and the reality of their death, as well as helping us to accept the fact of the finality of their death.  Most people are very uneasy to mention their loved one, but be sure to make it known that we want to talk about our loved one. This is what will help us the most.

   Touch:  We will miss the hugs, touches, kisses, and affection of our loved one.  We will be tempted to build a wall around ourselves to keep out other people who want to show us affection.  We may find hugging to be repulsive and feel guilt for having someone show us kindness through a hug or a kiss on the cheek.  Let that barrier down.  Accept the kindness that others want to share with us.  Let’s allow ourselves to be pampered.  Don’t be on the defensive.  We deserve to be hugged and comforted after going through such a loss.  If we’re all alone without any family, let’s make arrangements with a friend to give us a “healing hug” if we look or feel like we need it.  Bereaved children need lots of hugs to reassure them that they are still loved.

   Trust:  Let’s trust ourselves to know that we will recover from our grief.  We may begin to question our trust in God and our spirituality.  We may feel anger at God.  Let’s realize we are in a stage of rediscovery and wondering how we will handle the future.  We don’t have to be alone in the decisions that we have to make, but if we are alone, let’s trust our instincts and ask for help when we don’t know what to do.

   Toil:  Everyone grieves in different ways.  Grieving is hard work.  It is like toiling.  It takes lots of energy from us.  We will feel fatigue, struggle, difficulty, and not motivated to continue with life, but we will need to eat healthy, exercise and take good care of our own well-being.  Recognizing that grief recovery will take a lot of effort on our part. Embracing support, however, can help us not to feel like we are toiling so hard all alone.

   Make sure we administer all or some of the six great T’s of grief recovery to make our lives easier. We will heal faster and gain a life of peace and renewal.

John T. Catrett, III
Scissortail Hospice Chaplain
306 North Main Street, Suite E
Bristow, OK 74010

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