Well, it happened. My dad passed away a couple of weeks ago. It happened fairly quickly. I am sad. I feel that I am still navigating the numb phase. The phase where it has not totally sunk in just yet. I live in Colorado and my dad lived in Arizona. I am back home now and do not have the constant reminders of his absence. Part of me is a little relieved and part of me feels guilty about that. I wasn’t sure I was going to share the news with you just yet, but it just started coming out of me when I sat down to type.

I thought this would be a good time for me to talk about grief. Not only because I want to move through my grief with as much grace as I can, but also because it is an important topic that comes up a lot in the work that I do.

Maybe you’ve also experienced the loss of a loved one, or maybe a pet, a dream, a relationship, a career path, or financial loss. We are all going to experience loss in our life. No one is immune. Although, sometimes I feel like we are not allowed to grieve. We are told to put on a brave face, brush it off, or power through. Sometimes we are made to feel ashamed when we feel sad or cry. DON’T BELIEVE THEM!!

How do you grieve? Have you ever thought about giving yourself permission to grieve? Many resources discuss grief, although, there is no one clear cut handbook, article, book, advice, or timeline that will walk you through your grief step by step. Grief is a very personal process that will differ for everyone.

Here are some reminders about grief that I would like to share with you:

  • Grief is a normal part of life.
  • There is no right or wrong, good or bad way to process YOUR grief.
  • All of your emotions are OKAY. They are YOUR emotions. You do not need to justify, explain, or change them.
  • Don’t minimize or hide your grief because it makes other people feel uncomfortable or because you “should be over it by now.”
  • It will be painful, there is no way around that, but the pain will lessen over time. It doesn’t mean you have forgotten.
  • Reach out to family and friends. Allow them to be there for you. It is also okay if there are days you want to grieve alone. Be honest with them.
  • After a while, you will start to have moments of less sadness, less crying, of less heaviness. It does not mean you’ve finished grieving or that you no longer miss your loved one. It means that time has passed, you are moving through the grief.
  • There is no set timeline for grief. Let go of any expectations of when you “should” no longer feel sad or upset about your loss. It is normal if you find that after some time you are feeling better and then something happens and you find yourself feeling sad, depressed again.

One of the most important things is to continue to move with and through your grief versus get stuck in it. Even though getting stuck for a while is not a “bad” thing, as long as you don’t get stuck forever, as long as you continue to give yourself permission to grieve.

Remember there is no clear-cut way to move through grief. Allow yourself to feel the feelings that come up. It is okay if some days you want to talk about them and then some days you don’t. It is okay if some days you want to cry and then some days you have no tears.

It is going to take me a while to move through the grief of losing my dad. I know It will lessen over time and I will get through it. I will be okay. And so will you.

“Grief never ends. But changes. It’s a passage, not a place to stay. Grief is not a sign of weakness, nor a lack of faith. It is the price of love.” Unknown