As you anticipate the loss of a loved one, there are specific things you can do to take care of yourself.
- Think about what you can do physically to take care of yourself. Taking a walk, getting rest, minimizing alcohol and eating well, will help you find the physical strength needed to manage the emotional challenges.
- Give yourself permission to take a break from your sadness. It is okay to laugh or have fun in order to relieve the stress and tension that grief brings into our lives.
- Consider ways to deal with your fears and emotions by talking with a professional, faith leader or joining a support group either for caregivers or a bereavement group.
- Know that you may experience a range of emotions including sorrow, anger, relief, confusion and a deep sense of longing.
- Relax your expectations of yourself at this difficult time. You may not be able to accomplish and manage all the things you are used to doing and that is okay.
- Remember that everyone goes through this process in their own way and at their own pace. Generally there is no right way.
- The loss of a loved one can be a roller coaster of emotions and profound sadness is a normal reaction. If you are experiencing intense, pervasive sense of guilt, thoughts of suicide or a preoccupation with dying or an inability to function in your daily life, please seek the help of a professional counselor.