Tuesday, January 10, 2012

You Know You Are Getting Better When – Part 2 of 2

The following is continued from Saturday, January 7th - As I stated when I wrote part 1, I’ve referred to the following article often through these last 27 months since my son Bobby’s death.  Each time I read it, it helps me realize that although those of us who are grieving aren’t truly ill., there is no doubt that we are “sick” – we are “heartsick” and the overwhelming pain and heartache we experience is just as debilitating as any illness might be.

Yes, for many if not most of us, looking back on those early days, months and even years since our child's death, we often wondered ourselves if we would “survive” what we were going through.. So I wanted to share this with you, hoping you might find a little hope and or inspiration in this article written for “hospice” entitled – “You Know You Are Getting Better When”… It is quite lengthy, which is why I posted it over 2 days… Cherie Houston

~ By Helen Fitzgerald, CT for the American Hospice Foundation

“You Know You Are Getting Better When”…
• You can enjoy a good joke and have a good laugh without feeling guilty.
• Your eating, sleeping, and exercise patterns return to what they were beforehand.
• You no longer feel tired all the time.
• You have developed a routine or a new schedule in your daily life that does not include your loved one.
• You can concentrate on a book or favorite television program. You can even retain information you have just read or viewed.
• You no longer have to make daily or weekly trips to the cemetery. You now feel comfortable going once a month or only on holidays or other special occasions.
• You can find something to be thankful for. You always knew there were good things going on in your life, but they didn't matter much before.
• You can establish new and healthy relationships. New friends are now part of your life and you enjoy participating in activities with them.
• You feel confident again. You are in touch with your new identity and have a stronger sense of what you are going to do with the rest of your life.
• You can organize and plan your future.
• You can accept things as they are and not keep trying to return things to what they were.
• You have patience with yourself through "grief attacks." You know they are becoming further apart and less frightening and painful.
• You look forward to getting up in the morning.
• You stop to smell the flowers along the way and enjoy experiences in life that are meant to be enjoyed.
• The vacated roles that your loved one filled in your life are now being filled by yourself or others. When a loved one dies he or she leaves many "holes" in your life. Now those holes are being filled with other people and activities, although some will remain empty. You are more at ease with these changes.
• You can take the energy and time spent thinking about your loss and put those energies elsewhere, perhaps by helping others in similar situations or making concrete plans with your own life.
• You acknowledge your new life and even discover personal growth from experiencing grief.

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