How do you make it through the “firsts” of everything following losing those that are close to you? There are no easy answers. The truth is they hurt, and they become part of the process of grieving. I have personally found that the days leading up to birthdays, anniversaries, holidays, and other special occasions are much worse than when the actual day appears. Maybe, it is because by the time they arrive, you have exhausted and worked through the emotions? Regardless, the “firsts” will come and on to the next occasion without them.
Things are never the same, they are much more difficult and require us to adjust our days. There will always be subtle reminders that appear in our daily lives, reminding us there is a void. So what do you do?
You have to learn from your experience, not so much for yourself, but for others that will eventually travel some of the same paths. You have to have compassion for those that are new to the experience. You have to make the choice to find something good to come from your suffering. More importantly, you have to allow a person their right of passage in grieving. Everyone grieves in a different way, mainly because most of the time the relationships we have with those gone on, were unique and different. It doesn’t make one more important than the other. This is where we fail to show empathy to one another because we try to make our loss greater than someone elses. It is unfair to everyone involved. It shows selfishness on our parts in the worst kind of way.
I have found that the “Firsts” are managed a little easier if you find a way to pay honor on those special days. Have their favorite meals, go to their favorite place, or just spend some quiet time reliving the good you gained from knowing them. Take what you learn from grieving and use it for the better towards someone else.
There is a part that is just “survival” going through the motions. It’s okay, to function in this manner until you are able to find a healing place. The worst mistake we make is judging one another’s methods. What works for you, may be the opposite for someone else. No two people are alike, any more than how we deal with loss.
Please take time to be kind to those feeling loss during the special days and seasons. Be respectful in the manner they choose to grieve. If you are not there.. rest assured you will be if you live long enough. Do what you can to help ease the pain of others. You can’t fix it for them, but sometimes just knowing someone is listening, makes a world of difference. Maybe to the outside world it appears everyone else is fine, don’t assume this to be truth. Remember, we all deal with loss differently.
Yes, this year we feel the loss, there is nothing that will make that go away. It is another “first” that has to come in the steps to go forward in the process. Share your memories, share your tears and survive. Sometimes that’s enough for the first year without our loved ones, and it’s okay….it’s a process.