I think we as a country, a family, and as individuals are seven months into the Stages of Grief. Below I’ve enclosed an article from Healthline.com that explains the seven stages. Everyone suffers loss. Everyone suffers Grief at some time in our lives.
Learning to process this grief and work you way through it is of paramount importance to each of us.
Right now, the nation is battling with Covid, financial upheaval, unemployment, a political crisis, loss of our way of life, and generic fear driven by the media. Grief is not an imaginary thing you can just ignore. Grief will always come back until you work your way to the other side.
What I’ve learned along the way may help you understand grief better:
People suffer loss and grieve in different ways.
Grief takes time to heal, to adjust, to recreate your life.
Each person’s time frame for grief is different.
Alcohol, drugs, and suffering alone are not solutions.
A strong religious foundation in Christianity helps immensely.
You must be patient with yourself and persevere.
Recognize it’s ok to grieve and OK to seek help.
Where We Are Today in Covid Grief
Seven months into the Covid 19 Pandemic, I know people who are still just in Stage 1– DENIAL. This isn’t happening. I’m healthy, I’m not at risk. I don’t need to wear a mask. But, I have to go to the Texas A&M game! These folks still have a way to go. And that’s ok.
Maybe you’ve wrestled your way down through anger and depression. Maybe not. Grief affects people in different ways. It’s very important to recognize where you are, how your spouse is doing, to look for depression in your children, and understanding where those around you are.
The “7 Stages of Grief” I’ve listed below are ideal for creating discussion ideas for your home, neighbors, and the various groups you are in online. Everyone suffers grief and loss. Everyone is in one (or more) of these stages during Covid.
Recognizing where we are and how to move through the stages of grief is very important to our society today. Please pass this on to others. Talk about it with people you love. But the single most important thing I can leave you with is— DO NOT IGNORE GRIEF.
The 7 Stages of Grief from Healthline.com
The seven stages of grief are another popular model for explaining the many complicated experiences of loss. These seven stages include:
• Shock and denial. This is a state of disbelief and numbed feelings.
• Pain and guilt. You may feel that the loss is unbearable and that you’re making other people’s lives harder because of your feelings and needs.
• Anger and bargaining. You may lash out, telling God or a higher power that you’ll do anything they ask if they’ll only grant you relief from these feelings.
• Depression. This may be a period of isolation and loneliness during which you process and reflect on the loss.
• The upward turn. At this point, the stages of grief like anger and pain have died down, and you’re left in a more calm and relaxed state.
• Reconstruction and working through. You can begin to put pieces of your life back together and carry forward.
• Acceptance and hope. This is a very gradual acceptance of the new way of life and a feeling of possibility in the future.
As an example, this may be the presentation of stages from a breakup or divorce:
• Shock and denial: “She absolutely wouldn’t do this to me. She’ll realize she’s wrong and be back here tomorrow.”
• Pain and guilt: “How could she do this to me? How selfish is she? How did I mess this up?”
• Anger and bargaining: “If she’ll give me another chance, I’ll be a better boyfriend. I’ll dote on her and give her everything she asks.”
• Depression: “I’ll never have another relationship. I’m doomed to fail everyone.”
• The upward turn: “The end was hard, but there could be a place in the future where I could see myself in another relationship.”
• Reconstruction and working through: “I need to evaluate that relationship and learn from my mistakes.”
• Acceptance and hope: “I have a lot to offer another person. I just have to meet them.”
The key to understanding grief is realizing that no one experiences the same thing. Grief is very personal, and you may feel something different every time. You may need several weeks, or grief may be years long.
If you decide you need help coping with the feelings and changes, a mental health professional is a good resource for vetting your feelings and finding a sense of assurance in these very heavy and weighty emotions.