Someone you love has died and now the holidays will never be the same. I’m sorry to put this so plainly, but it’s true and you need to acknowledge it. Too often people stumble into the holidays after a death believing things can stay the same.
Bereavement Counseling Education: 2015 Without You
The beginning of a New Year without a loved one can leave one pessimistic about the future and New Year. The previous year took something very special that can never be replaced and leaves the New Year and future years with many questions marks and uncertainties.
The following year is a pivotal time of healing and adaptation for the grieving. It brings along many ‘first” anniversaries. In some cases a first Christmas or first Thanksgiving without a loved one, depending on the time of year the deceased passed. Some anniversaries may also include birthdays, or special anniversaries that will cause the scab of grief to bleed freshly. Ultimately, the most dreaded day of the New Year is the anniversary of the loved one’s death.
So for those of us who lost a loved in 2014, how can we honestly look forward to 2015? We can be optimistic but also realistic. We do not want to harm ourselves by not expressing grief and allowing ourselves to mourn. So while these days and anniversaries will bring grief, we should see the grief as something therapeutic that allows us to heal and express our love in our healthy way.
The optimism for the New Year should be us adapting to the loss in a healthy way that allows us to love the deceased in different spiritual ways. The love and bond never dies but exists in eternity and can never be broken. It is through our grief that we learn to better continue that bond in this life and into the next one.
The optimism for the New Year also means we are still alive and must continue to exist for others as well as ourselves. Good things can still happen and new bonds will be formed. They can never replace the old bonds but they continue our life story. In any story, the previous chapters are critical, but without the following the chapters the story has no meaning. We need to understand this concept and continue to write future chapters in our life.
So realistically how will 2015 be? It will be happy, it will be sad and there will be times of optimism and times of pessimism. Grief is not linear but is wavelike, oscillating back and forth as we gradually move forward. Yet, as we progress, we cannot forget the bonds that exist with others and the new bonds that still must be formed. In our continued bond with the deceased, let us remember that they want us to be happy and appreciate our love that will be again consummated in the next life.
If you are interested in learning more about Grief and Bereavement Counseling Training then please review our program. Our courses offer Bereavement Counseling Education for qualified professionals who hope to achieve certification in Grief Counseling.
In the meantime, please realize that your grief is not something to throw to the side but to embrace because the gift of love between you and the loved one lost is beautiful and not something to be taken lightly. Try in this New Year to see that this bond still exists but in a different way as you travel this tough road of grief.