Finding a new normal
Although everyone will move through their grief differently, studies on the grief process reveal that most symptoms will ease within 18 months. Research shows most of those grieving a loss come to accept this change in circumstances and re-engage in life. If you're grieving, know that with time, you will find a 'new normal'. You'll never be the old you, but it is possible to move forward while incorporating the memories of your loved one in this new chapter of your life.
Grief is like the ocean; it comes on waves ebbing and flowing. Sometimes the water is calm, and sometimes it is overwhelming. All we can do is learn to swim.
— Vicki Harrison
Moving on doesn't mean forgetting. There are lots of ways to honor the memory of your loved one while moving on with your life. Try writing a letter to your loved one or telling them how things have been and what he/she has missed. Do things that help you feel connected to them like your visit your favorite restaurant or a place you loved to spend time outdoors together. You might even try to 'bury your burden' like Leeza does! Watch this Facebook Live with Leeza, Marti and Kena to learn more about resilience.
4 Tips for Moving Forward
Ask for Help
Consider joining one our online grief support groups. These meetings are open to anyone striving to cope with a loss of a loved one. It's a safe nonjudgmental place for you to connect with others on their grief journey. If one on one is more your style, consider reaching out to a counselor or mental health professional for help. There is no shame or guilt in asking for help. In fact, it's a sign of great courage and strength.
Express Your Grief
Often, the best way to get through your grief is to work through it. It's okay to cry when we feel sad or yell when we feel angry. This is a great time to express your emotions through journaling, poetry, art, or music. Give yourself permission to feel whatever you feel. Counselors and other mental health professionals can be helpful for processing emotions and working through grief.
Get Involved in Something
Find a new hobby, try a virtual class, volunteer or try joining a social club or group. Sometimes, stepping outside our comfort zone is exactly what we need to nudge us forward! Plus, learning new things is great for your brain and can be a welcome distraction from your grief.
Laughter is healing, so don't be afraid to share a laugh with someone! Maybe try sharing some funny stories of your loved one. Sometimes, we have to allow ourselves some levity, because we might feel guilty for having fun or moving on. Chances are your loved one would want you to be happy.
Grief is a process, and sometimes it can feel more like a roller coaster ride. Try to show yourself some grace and give yourself time to heal. Grieving can be emotionally draining, so don't overschedule yourself and allow plenty of time for rest. You've got this!