stages of grief

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On Grief and Bulls in China Shops

I’m reading Joan Didion’s ‘The Year of Magical Thinking’. I have always found comfort, and a home in books. Where some parents elect to use the television as a nanny; mine was reading books. I’m grateful for the understanding and wisdom I learned through the accumulation of stories from my fellow outcasts. This knowledge however, in time became a bridge between myself and my family. For at some point I journeyed too far beyond their comfort zones, their norms, and their unhealthy coping mechanisms.

The bridge will always be there for them, but I don’t think they’ll ever be in a position to cross the distance between us, so fixed they are in their fear. I still have love for them, but it is also mixed with sorrow; that their faith in themselves and others is so limited; they are in effect hiding from life and the kind of enrichment that can only be achieved through being vulnerable with others, and find that—flaws and all—you can still find unconditional love and acceptance, for none of us here are perfect.

The strange thing I’ve come learn about interpersonal boundaries is that they are isolating no matter what. For the person who is forced over time and error, to learn how to create healthy boundaries and then put them firmly in place, and equally the person who lives in a world without boundaries. For they embody the relationship version of a bull in a China Shop; they only know how to break things—despite the very thing they long for most being wholeness.

My father passed away several years ago, and more recently since the cutting of ties between my mother and myself, I have felt what Didion refers to as “the loneliness of the abandoned child of whatever age.”

A friend writes to Didion about the death of a parent after the passing of her mother “despite our preparation, indeed, despite our age, (death) dislodges things deep in us, sets off reactions that surprise us and they may cut free memories and feelings that we had thought gone to ground long ago. We might, in that indeterminate period they call mourning, be in a submarine, silent on the ocean’s bed, aware of the depth charges, now near and now far, buffeting us with recollections.”

Reflecting further on loss, Didion writes that “Grief is different. Grief has no distance. Grief comes in waves, paroxysms, sudden apprehensions that weaken the knees and blind the eyes and obliterate the dailiness of life.”

For myself, I mourn the loss of my mother while she is still alive, and in the worsening of my poor health, it has dislodged so much within that I feel numerous waves of grief. For the good that was in my mother, for all the times she abandoned me, and for all that might have been. I grieve the understanding that my own mother’s mother abandoned her numerous times too, and my mother—whether she tried to or not—failed to break this cycle that leaves nothing but destruction in it’s wake, as it creates multigenerational bulls in China Shops. Capable of breaking much, and healing nothing.

#ComplicatedGrief #Grief #GriefQuotes #StagesOfGrief #ChildhoodEmotionalAbuse #Childhoodtrauma #NarcissisticPersonalityDisorder #Relationships #MightyBookClub

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Struggling to accept acceptance

Something that keeps sticking in my mind lately is this idea of Acceptance in the stages of grief. I think that when you are chronically ill, you end up spending months, if not years, cycling through the stages of grief. We Deny. We feel Pain—both chronic, and emotional. We feel Guilt for all the things we can no longer do. We Anger at our mounting disabilities, and we Bargain. Depression that existed before, becomes infinitely worse. Anxiety or occasional Depression becomes something more permanent, that twines itself into your mental and emotional state within this vacuum of lost time.

We Reflect. On the past, all that we have lost, the limitations placed upon our futures. Chronic illness makes philosophers of us all. And in all this reflection many of us find that we gain new insight into what it means to live, only for this enlightenment to deepen our feelings of Despair and Loneliness.

Acceptance can be elusive.

Often, just as you settle into your new normal, some unforeseen event upsets the balance you managed to create out of chaos. We spend days endlessly trying. The illness is trying. The uninformed world made up of doctors, carers, spectators, friends and family, can be really trying. Trying to navigate life with a chronic illness is no easy task in a society that wants us whole, or dying, without much room for anything in between. I always think of “The Beach” when they move their dying friend out of camp, so they don’t have to bare witness to his pain and suffering. In doing so, they relieve themselves of the burden of a prolonged state of grief. Nice for those who are healthy and able to lean out and turn their heads away from suffering.

Betrayal writ large for those of us who do not have this luxury.

This is where I have a problem with the idea of Acceptance. I can accept that my health is what it is now, and I understand why my most of my friends have moved me out of their mental village. It’s difficult for me to live with my failing health, and when you don’t know what to say, I can see how it just becomes easier to say nothing at all. What I find Unacceptable is how much support my family, my own blood, have happily accepted from me over the years, and can’t even be bothered to read up my illness as one of my friends did of her own accord. I don’t need anyone to get the words right to show up for me, it can be as simple as showing willing.

Trying to support someone is supporting someone.

The other thing that makes Acceptance of my new normal difficult, is that I have yet to get any formal diagnosis. In mid January it will be 6 months since my first trip to hospital. Where my trust that I can rely on doctors to support my health was thin before, it is now almost non existent. Considering all of the many doctors I saw while in hospital, failed to recognise that I was suffering from medication induced hyperthyroidism, so that the thyroxine they sent me home with only made me worse so that I eventually broke out in angry hives one morning after taking it.

I still have some way to go in finding out what is wrong with me, but while I still have the bandwidth to advocate for myself, I will continue to search for answers. Because I cannot Accept having no diagnosis, and no direction. The only light at the end of that particular tunnel is surely a diminishing one. I shouldn’t have to Accept fighting for my health alone, but I will shoulder it in the face of having no other choice, which I guess is a grudging kind of acceptance.

I will keep surviving and I will keep trying for as long as I am able to do so. And in the event that I succeed in recovering some of my health, I will be prearmed with the knowledge of how “happy” people will be for me; some may even describe me as being “brave” as if that means something. And I know I can count on at least one person to tell me how well I looked while I spent this time stuck on the platform between the realms of the able and the disabled. Some people just can’t help themselves, and fail to see how this presents as the most backhanded compliment you can pay to any person who has experienced long term physical disability.

It’s all very trying… but I guess that’s why it’s called grief.

#Grief #StagesOfGrief #MyCondition #MyalgicEncephalomyelitis #ChronicIllness #ChronicFatigue #Hyperthyroidism #Depression #Loneliness #MightyTogether #InvisibleIllness #InvisibleDisability

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My partner died by suicide 12/5/21- leaving behind our 4 month old son and I to figure out this world together. He never reached out or shared any signs. No one told me about his prior mental health issues including concerns over his suicidality. We spoke and checked in with each other every day. Every dang day. But he said he was tired and I believed him because I was too. We were new parents. I guess my point is that I’m just so mad still. I’m a school counselor fully competent in mental health. I deal wit. Suicidal students regularly and lost a few good friends in life. I don’t get how he could do this. It’s a battle between my head and heart. My heart is so angry with him and my head knows he lost control and that this was a side effect of a brain disease- it wasn’t him being rational. The anger saves me from the deep hole of hopelessness- but I can’t live in this feeling for ever. Will my anger ever go away? I can’t help but just hate him for what he did- regardless of it being him or not- I can’t prove that he didn’t just dip out cuz shit got hard- and I guess- it wouldn’t be that outta question for him to quit something he couldn’t handle- so I feel like I’m letting him be praised and all this stuff for a cruel act. Sorry for the rambling. #StagesOfGrief #SuicideLossSurvivor

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Grieving

I never thought I would have to grieve our so much. As a child I thought grief was for when someone died. As an adult I know it's so much more! I grieve for the future success in my career, for the children O can't have, for the things I cannot do, for the family I have lost, for time I have lost, for the childhood I never had. The list is much longer than that! So much longer! Chronic Illness and Abuse steals so much from a person. #abusesurvivor #CPTSD #PTSD #arthymias #Anxiety #Depression #treatmentresitantdepression #HypermobilitySyndrome #PsoriaticArthritis #spondylarthritis #methylationissues #Grief #ComplicatedGrief #StagesOfGrief

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Need help coping with stroke, cancer and death.

I don’t know how to cope with the suffering my grandma is going through. She had a major stroke 4 months ago, she can’t move anything on her right side of her body. She’s been suffering immensely, these past 5 months.. she also has cancer. She’s 88. To add onto the horrible things she’s been going through: Her best friend of 65 years, passed away and her funeral was today. I went with gram. I knew today would be very hard for her. But I didn’t expect to see her as upset as she was. She was crying o much and so hard, she had a coughing fit. She was embarrassed, because we were in the front row with her wheelchair.

After, she wanted to hold my hand. She looked at me and was crying so hard, just being able to squeak out “I miss her so much… my best friend..” I have never seen so much pain in a persons face before.. i didn’t know what to say to try to comfort her. I just went numb and felt helpless. I held her hand. I wish I said “you don’t have to go through this alone. I am here with you. I love you.” my grandma is my favorite person on earth, and seeing her suffering so much in so many ways breaks my heart into a million pieces. I feel so hollow.

Gram is in a nursing home now. My mom and I are helping her be as comfortable as she can. but she’s taking pain meds a lot because her right arm hurts. And the cancer is in an intimate area and is probably spreading. She may have dementia. And she’s said before, she just wants to pass away. I try to visit on the weekends when I’m not working. But I want to just be with her all the time. I’m don’t know how much time I have left with her. I don’t know how to make this easier for her. To take away some of her pain.

I have severe mental health issues, and I’m not coping well with grams situation. I have chronic depression, anxiety, and ptsd from trauma. I’m dissociating and numb and so anxious. Growing up emotions were never expressed, only anger and avoidance of problems. I’m slowly learning about what emotions and feelings are. I am very frustrated. I’m seeing 2 therapists but only once a month because their schedules are so booked. I have absolutely no idea how to deal with my gram eventually passing away. She’s my world.
Please help me. #Depression #Anxiety #CopingWithCancer #Cancer #PTSD #Stroke #CheckInWithMe #help #MajorDepressiveDisorder #ChronicPain #Grief #StagesOfGrief

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Grief ain’t got no timeline #PancreaticCancer #Grief #ComplicatedGrief #StagesOfGrief #BorderlinePersonalityDisorder #Depression

I always held onto the fact that my Nonna met Tash. Since the night I got certified and she ended up calling the police on me my Nonna always told her 'you're the best friend Kailey's ever had' I spent years... living up to Tash's ideal. Being the perfect carbon copy of someone she wanted to be with. Yet in complete certainty I lost myself. My autonomy. Tash convinced me that I was tremendously hard love by me because of my mental health. She'd quote my Nonna saying that and it would reel me again. I forever felt indebted towards her.

Yet I didn't realize I felt horribly indebted for years since my attempt. I wish more than anything that my Nonna could see the human I am today. I know she is proud. I know she's my guardian angel but I am angry today.

I couldn't give my Nonna all of me because she was using coke daily. I was constantly worried even feels as i was cheated out of my final months with her. She made it about her and how Much she missed me being around.

It's hard. I remember the call like yesterday. I remember getting chills because my dad was calling "No news is good news" being the motto in our family. I knew though. As soon as he spoke I could hear the devastation in his tone. I'll never forget that day. In that moment I realized I was going to lose my biggest cheerleader and my Nonna. My true mum. Who always had shoulders for me to cry on. Room for a cuddle to have. Time To hug. Time To tease. Time To laugh. She HAD time for me. My hero, every day... she got up and she did it all; she always was loving and gracious.

I always have felt incredibly selfish because of all the shit I put her through but I know in my heart it's 'water under the bridge' as she would always tell me.
It makes me angry how an Tash who was a transient person in my life was able to create the chaos she did.

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The Death of My Mother Through A Bipolar ll Filter #Bipolar2Disorder #deathofaparent #StagesOfGrief #dreams #PTSD

I understand the struggle already in place when one has a mood disorder and then loses a parent. I have bioolar 2 and lost my mother a few months back. The reality for meis trying to judge where I am at on the grief scale because ofthe depressive nature of bioolar.2 being already in play.The dreams I am having are the worst part of dealing with this. I keep on going
back to the point of my mother's death and the
difhculty of it and have not gotten to the point
yet where I can see the happy memories of the
past.
My dreams make me frantic and I wake up with
a headache and a pounding heartland it takes
me a half hour to an hour to calm back down.