Thursday, March 20, 2014

What I have learned through grief….

I lost my father 10 years ago this coming April. It was a sudden/unexpected loss for our family. This post is not supposed to be a "downer,” I just wanted to share a few things that I have learned though my loss. Grief isn’t always just a product of death, it can be caused by numerous things- unraveling marriage, learning that Diet Coke is bad for you, loss of a job, gray hair, financial issues, expensive jeans that no longer fit, ect.  And grief can also be a chance to learn.  Who we are, what we can take and the best way to tackle this life.  These are the things that I have learned through my walk with grief. 

How to be a better friend

You know how when something bad happens to people others may avoid the situation completely with the excuse “I didn’t know what to say?" Let me help you; you don’t have to say anything! Show up and give an awkward smile (or even just make eye contact) and they will let you know what they need. Some people might like hugs, talking it out or not talking about it. A trip to the local ice-cream shop or a gift basket with a journal, chocolate and thank you notes are great options,  too! The main point is that they need to know that you care and are there for them! Another thing I think is important is to stay in touch…maybe not every week but grief doesn’t go away 2 weeks after the funeral and it is nice to know you are thought about…just might lift your day!!

I prefer to cry in private (in my car)
Sometimes I still get emotional and this tends to occur in my car. I guess I get lost in a song or good memories and before I know it, I’m in tears. This one took a long time for me to even tell Jason about.  I’ve learned that it’s ok to not be “ok” and it’s ok to tell people when you are hurting.  It still doesn’t mean I want to talk about it, I just want you to know that if I’m a little extra crazy, that I am going through a hard time and might need a little extra forgiveness or patience!

Having a “Death Folder” is a great idea

I have a folder with all of the information that my loved ones would need in the event of my passing. Yes, I know you're agreeing with Jason right now that I am a very morbid person but just give me a second to explain!!!!!!

"In the event" the last thing I would want anyone having to do is scavenge through all of my stuff to find the info they would need such as a copy of my driver’s license and social security card, insurance papers with the phone numbers and policy numbers and the list of Elton John songs I want played at my funeral! Think of how convenient it would be to have it all in one place!


<3 Rachel


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