We all go through it, at least some part of it
Griefrecoverymethod.com gives a short little definition “grief is the normal and natural emotional reaction to loss.”
Those pesky emotions, they just get in the way.
Or do they lead to an end which makes us different, and truly better somehow.
Greiving the loss of a loved one is normal. Grieving the loss of dreams is normal. Grieving the loss of connection with your child is normal. Grieving the things that will never be.
It looks different to different people, each his/her own personality.
But there are some similarities as well.
Grief.com states that “The five stages, denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance are a part of the framework that make up our learning to live with the one we lost.”
Has the special needs parent lost someone? Is the grief the same or different? If the loved one is still alive is the grief the same or different?
I lost a girl who should have been able
to go with me to get our toe nails done
to get bubbly and giddy over some cute boy
to dance to her hearts content
to love with her words and actions
to strive for excellence in academics
to conquer the world with her bravery and courage
Denial: I remember sitting in the hospital the weekend we were told the episodes she was having were seizures, and that her development was several months behind. I felt, well numb. This just was not happening to me and our perfect and cute little family.
Anger: because of my personality, this one lasted a bit longer, and still haunts me from time to time. I was pretty angry with God, and other people too when they did not agree with me, for the 1st 2 years of girlie’s diagnosis. How could He? How could he do this to my girl?
Bargaining: I remember, when girlie was 1 year old, telling God, “if you will make my girlie well and whole, I will give up my new home, move in to a shack, and live in poverty” “If only…”.
Depression: have no idea, most of those first years were very foggy.
Acceptance: What? I am supposed to accept this as normal? I am supposed to accept that God made girlie this way. Yes, yes you are.
For me, the grief is cyclical. As a milestone is reached by others, and in turn not reached by girlie, tasks they can accomplish, as girlie does not, the grief gets more profound. Hits harder with more force, more gusto behind it.
This was girlie’s first year in middle school.
That was hard to say.
Her body grows, her mind well does not seem to. She gains milestones like, reaching her arm above her head for 30 seconds. Her peers excel in mathematics, athletics, the arts.
Cyclical grieving is NORMAL for the special needs parent.
The grieving may never end. Thankfully, I am never never alone.