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More Lessons Learned From Loss – List #2

Here’s the second installment of my lessons learned from loss. If you missed list one, you can find it here. Again, there is no hierarchy or particular order to these lists. It was the act of writing things down randomly that made a difference for me. I changed my original lists from first person to second in an effort to make things more relevant for you.

I like to go back and reread my lists from time to time. It’s a reminder of where I was, where I am now and how far I have come.

I’m sharing my lists in the hope it might encourage you to make one of your own if you’ve experienced a loss recently, or even not so recently.

Lessons Learned From Loss – List #2

  • No one is prepared for loss. You won’t be ready.

  • Keep talking and keep laughing (when you can) through it all.

  • It’s true; we don’t appreciate loved ones enough when they’re with us.

  • No one can take away your memories.

  • Some memories are yours alone.

  • Don’t listen to anyone who says you should be over it by now.

  • Keeping a journal can help you get through tough times.

  • Anger is normal and sometimes even necessary when grieving.

  • Take photos of this life passage too.

  • Grief is not something to hurry through or just get over. It’s something you move through and experience at your own pace and in your own way.

  • Grief’s intensity lessens, but the loss is for a lifetime.

  • Time is everything.

I will keep on making additions to my lessons learned from loss lists because I know there is still much to learn.

Which item on this list “speaks” most to you?

Have you ever made a list of things you’ve learned from loss?

Have you ever kept a journal?

18 thoughts on “More Lessons Learned From Loss – List #2

  1. **Grief is not something to hurry through or just get over. It’s something you move through and experience at your own pace and in your own way.

    Grief’s intensity lessens, but the loss is for a lifetime.**

    The pain and the loss of loosing my brother never leaves me. Some days more than others. It’s been 4 years not sure if the grief’s intensity lessens .. there are days bearable then there are others that it is just like the day his body was found….agonizing. Alli xx

  2. I used the link to look at your previous list — the one about not having to finish grieving just took my breath away. These are all amazing, all deceptively complex in their seeming simplicity…but THAT one just struck me the most. Silly as it sounds, it’s almost like you gave me permission (or gave me the inspiration to give myself permission) to not have to let go of my grief if I don’t think I can. It doesn’t mean I won’t move on…jut that I don’t have to be “over it”.

    Wow. Just, wow.

    1. Kayleigh, So many times it does seem as if there’s supposed to be a time allotment allowed for grief. It makes no sense really. The loss is forever, so how can the grief follow any time frame? And as you pointed out, this doesn’t mean we don’t or can’t move on. Thank you for reading both posts.

  3. Nancy, I agree with your points here. I found, especially at work, people saying “you should be over this by now” only a few months after the death of a family member. And I know that anger is something that comes out in strange and mysterious ways among all of those who are grieving…Thanks for writing this.

    1. Kathleen, There are no timetables for grief that’s for sure. And yes, sometimes anger does indeed come out in strange and mysterious ways, especially with children perhaps. Thank you for reading and commenting.

  4. I guess I somehow missed the first post of these so I will combine all the ones I like from both:
    allow pets in nursing homes, (of course!),
    I don’t have to finish grieving,silence is overrated, and some things cannot be fixed; all from the first post and I loved them. From this post I loved most the point about I don’t need to be over it already (as has been said to me). I don’t wish to be “over it”, would rather keep blogging so those “new to it” know they are not alone.

  5. Ahhhhh…. Grief. I was not prepared for the loss of my son but I was for my father. His decline and death was a beautiful dance. But then again, I was at the beginning of my cancer crisis and my mind was numb. Still is

    1. Green Monkey, I’m so sorry for the loss of your son and for your father too. Losing a child is a whole different kind of grief that brings with it so many unimaginable challenges. And with your cancer diagnosis as well, you are dealing with an awful lot. I appreciate your comments. Thank you.

  6. They were all great, Nancy, but the one that spoke to me most is the one about people telling one that he/she should be “over it” by now. Why is it that people say this? I think it’s because they can’t deal with the reality of pain caused by loss. Perhaps they are doing some wishful thinking that everything could return as before, but that will never happen.

    Your list is excellent and moving.

    I keep a journal, and this is where I find my release. It is for my eyes only, and it feels secure, like a great friend. I haven’t journaled for awhile, though, but plan to get back to it tonight. There is such comfort in the process of writing.

    1. Beth, I think you probably know how valuable I think journaling is too. I have been neglecting my “old friend” (my journal) a bit too of late and want to get back to it on a more regular basis. You might be right about some people wanting to avoid the reality of loss. It can be hard to face. Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Beth.

    1. Philippa, The loss is for a lifetime, so how can one ever possibly finish grieving? Luckily, the memories are for a lifetime too. Thanks for commenting. Again, I’m very sorry for your loss, Philippa.

  7. Nancy, this is really well written and I too especially can’t understand anyone saying to someone they should “be over it”. Grief stays with you and hits you at different times. I also love the “Grief’s intensity lessens, but loss is for a lifetime.”It’s so true because time does help, but it doesn’t completely heal. It can’t. “Anger is normal and sometimes even necessary when grieving.” It’s an important part of the grieving process. I also love the one “Memories are treasures of the heart.” Thank you for sharing this.
    xoxoxo -Susan

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