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Friday, September 23, 2016

Dealing With Grief


Four months ago my father died. Last weekend the hospice team held a memorial service for those who lost loved ones this year. I decided not to attend the service. The hospice team was wonderful and I truly appreciate all they did for my father. I wish I had asked for their help earlier than I did. (Daughter #3 was the one who told me call them.) But I didn't want to go to the memorial service because I knew I would cry. I don't want to cry anymore. Yes, my father was 94 when he passed away and he lived a good long life, but I still miss him--and I still get choked up now and then.

One of the members of the hospice team subsequently called this week to ask how I was doing. I told her I assuaged my grief by becoming a crochet addict. It's helped me, not only because it keeps me busy but because I am making prayer shawls and baby blankets for those who are ill and in the hospital. Perspective is everything.

She also asked if I had people I could talk to--and I do, but again if I talk to them I'll get upset. So I keep busy. She gave me the phone number of a counselor in case I need it.

Grief hits people in different ways. I know this because I've gone through it several times. My way of dealing with it is similar as on previous occasions. I just get busier.

When my brother died at the age of twenty-five, I was twenty-four. I was already driving up to Jersey City twice a week because I was taking courses towards another degree as well as working full-time. However, after my brother's death, I joined a singing group, adding another level of activity.

My grief-stricken mother reacted to my brother's death in a different way. She started going to garage sales, estate sales, and flea markets. She bought Depression glass for next to nothing and then started collecting other antiques. She became quite an expert in old stuff. Unfortunately, after she died and we had to move my father, I had to get rid of all that old stuff. That sure kept me busy!

At any rate, I'm doing well. Waves of emotion hit me at times but I manage to distract myself. My father was an amazing man and I know he wouldn't want me to be unhappy on his account, but I do miss him.

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