One thing that was covered in this class that I feel I can highly relate to was the types of grief that a person goes through after losing a loved one. The definition of grief is a deep sorrow or sadness that is usually the effect of losing a loved one. We’ve all heard this definition before but what does this really mean in the real world when it happens to someone?
I actually got to experience it first hand two summers ago, after losing my great grandfather due to cancer. I was fairly close to him, and my family as well as myself visited him often while he was in the hospital during his final weeks. After hearing the news of his death over the phone from my mother, I automatically felt a sense of emptiness and confusion. Shortly after, I tried taking my mind off of it by hanging out with old friends or occupied myself by going to the gym, and these things actually took my mind off of it until the point where I almost forgot it happened. Little did I know, that this was just the denial stage, where I blocked the fact that it happened from my mind, but this only lasted until the funeral. After I had attended the funeral, I had a whole different set of emotions flowing through my head. It was like I was almost stressing myself out with non-stop questions such as, “why did this have to happen to such a good man?” Or,“How did everyone let this happen?” After reading the article,”Coping With Death and Grief,” I feel like many of these feelings that I was experiencing after the loss were actually part of the normal grieving process, which were founded by psychiatrist Elisabeth Kubler-Ross. They are described as denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and finally acceptance. Although not everyone experiences all of these in this specific order, I feel like this is how they set upon me, but what I did not know was that every step of this grieving process was actually getting me closer and closer to accepting that it HAD actually happened and realizing that it was actually for the best, since he was suffering and in pain.
Although many people (including myself at the time) do not realize it until after, it is true that the grieving process is in fact beneficial in the long run. Kubler-Ross described these steps which nearly every person goes through when they experience a loss, and knowing and recognizing these steps not only helps one to better learn what one will experience while they grieve, but also that each stage is actually getting someone closer and closer to acceptance and moving on positively with their life.