In book club we’ve been reading Resilient Grieving by Lucy Hone, PhD. Today we read chapter 7 about the importance of positive emotions during grieving.
Positive emotions act as a respite for us and can offer a broader perspective during the grieving process. In the grips of grief it can be hard to see any shades of hope, but if you look around you may find yourself with the gift of gratitude.
Be thankful for people: those people who are standing by you with encouragement and friendship, have pride in your other family members who are also forging on in spite of the devastation and the strengthening of these bonds at this time. Share the fun memories of your loved one with others even remembering their special quirks. It is ok to laugh, we are human after all.
Be thankful for another day: sometimes when you are grieving it is hard to make it through the day, as everything seems so overwhelming. As you wake up in the morning, try being thankful that you persevered and made it through another day.
Be thankful for the beautiful things in nature: be thankful for a beautiful sunrise or sunset, an interesting cloud pattern, or a leaf that has turned an amazing shade of red. Sometimes when we are grieving we turn all of our attention inward and it can be healing to turn a bit of that attention outward to appreciate things we see and that allow us to feel a connection to the world around us.
Be thankful for the resources and services that are available to help with your grief: many times we take for granted that there are services available to help adults and children with their grief journey after the death of a loved one. If you are taking advantage of the services, be thankful for the counselors and the other grieving people who give you support and encouragement. If you are not taking advantage of the services, call the Center for Hope and Healing to get connected or just know if you need services, you can access them with one call in the future.
What other things can you be find to be thankful for?
Grief is a process and though you will never stop loving your loved one you will eventually learn to live with the finality of the loss. Your hope and strength will be renewed and you will progress with new meaning in your life. Being thankful is just one way of actively remaining connected to other people and the world while you are grieving.