© 2010 by Marty Tousley, RN, MS, FT, DCC
Forever Autumn – Justin Hayward
Autumn is a season that seems perfectly aligned with grief. The long, sun-lit days of summer are dwindling. The days grow ever shorter, leaves die and fall from the trees, and nature braces itself for the long cold months ahead. And as Justin Hayward expresses so well in his beautiful song, Forever Autumn, this is also a time when the bereaved are more acutely aware of the absence of someone dearly loved:
The summer sun is fading as the year grows old,
and darker days are drawing near.
The winter winds will be much colder,
now you’re not here.
If Autumn marks the death of your loved one–or if it holds the anniversary of your loved one’s death–recognize that your pain is likely to intensify this time of year, and take steps to build comfort and healing into these particular days. Build a memory time into the day, or pack an entire day with meaning. (It’s easier to cope with memories you’ve chosen than to have them take you by surprise.) Immerse yourself in the healing power of remembrance. Go to a special place, read aloud, and/or listen to a favorite song. Celebrate what once was and is no more. Know that oftentimes, the anticipation of an anniversary date is worse than the actual day. Plan what you’re going to do ahead of time, even if you plan to be alone. Don’t set yourself up for a bad day. Let your friends and relatives know in advance which days and events are significant for you. Verbalize your needs and include them in your plans. Others may be very willing to help, but need for you to tell them how. If you’re feeling anxious, confused or immobilized as a certain date or time approaches, consider getting the reassurance you need by returning to your support group or speaking with your bereavement counselor.
The First Year of Grief: Help for the Journey
Understand the nature of grief and loss and their potential impact on all aspects of your life: physical, financial, emotional, social and spiritual. Learn how to move through grief actively and make the process of mourning a healing one. Find support and guidance in dealing with the many facets of grief. Learn more about this source of online support by grief counselor Marty Tousley.
First Year of Grief – support
Eulogy – How to eBook