Thoughts on “Grief And Sudden Loss” (from Practitioner Pat Obst, LCSW)
We are all spiraling in raw grief right now. We have all just experienced a sudden death – the end of life as we knew it.
We’re feeling shock, confusion, worry/fear, sadness, anger, hopelessness and even guilt. All of these emotions are very normal in grief. But first – “do no harm.” In other words, don’t shame yourself for feeling any of these emotions. We’re hurting and we need to practice the utmost self-compassion at this time. Kristin Neff is a wonderful resource on this subject. You can find guidance in how to be self compassionate on her website at – www.self-compassion.org.
Also, within our collective grief we’re each experiencing our own unique losses – loss of experiences like – knowing you may not get to see your first child get their high school diploma at a graduation ceremony, or welcoming a new born baby into your family and not being able to share in the celebration with family members, or saying good-bye to a loved one who passes and not being able to be by their side or find comfort with family at a funeral gathering.
Other losses are more urgent and scary – loss of income due to a layoff, loss of access to healthcare for other medical needs, loss of order and routine in life now that homes are filled to the brim with kids and parents all having to work and be educated from home.
The list of losses could continue on. It’s so important for us to acknowledge all that we feel around our grief. It’s essential to learn to be with our grief, to embrace our experiences and accept our feelings. Only when we sit with our grief can we listen to what it’s telling us and then reach out for what we need.
We must all make sure that we have a support system that is adequate for us and that will sustain us in our grief journey. A big part of a support system is having people, groups, professionals, etc. in place to build up and sustain our emotional and mental health.
We’re all in this together this time. As a grief counselor at Starting Point, I know that my colleagues and I feel that we are all part of the Starting Point family. Although we’re distanced from one another, we want to be a part of your support system. Therefore, our practitioners will be providing content on Starting Point’s Facebook page. Our messages will serve to provide compassion, encouragement, guidance and hope to sustain you through this time of
grieving and transitioning to a new normal. —Pat Obst, LCSW
Check our page often to tap into this vital part of your support system. We are here for you.