Losing anyone who is a big part of your life can be completely devastating. Whether you saw it coming or not, it’s difficult to find a way to move on. While everyone grieves in their own way, these seven steps might help you on your journey to finding strength after the loss of a parent.
1. Allow Yourself To Feel
You might think you’re being strong by holding your feelings in, but if you don’t allow yourself to grieve, those feelings will all come crashing down on you sooner or later. Holding your feelings in will only cause an explosion later on. Whether you’re feeling angry, devastated, guilty or in despair, allow yourself to grieve and sort out your emotions.
2. Support Your Family
You may have lost a parent, while others members of your family lost a brother or sister, an aunt or uncle, or a grandparent. While it may be easy to focus on your own grief, try to realize that others are sharing your loss. Use this time to lean on one another, to be supportive, and to come together to avoid feeling isolated. With people you love by your side, you’ll be able to help each other get through the tough time.
3. Be Patient
Losing a parent affects everyone in different ways. There is no set amount of time for the grieving process. Be patient. Allow yourself time to work through the pain, the loss, and the confusion. You’ll never forget your parent or the memories you shared, but in time, you’ll find a way to adjust to the loss.
4. Take Time For Yourself
You will most likely feel overwhelmed after your parent passes. You may have a to-do list a mile long, while experiencing pain and devastation. Don’t try to be everywhere at once; allow others to help. Take time off of work. It’s important to take care of your physical and mental health and allow yourself to rest. Never feel guilty for taking a break from work or your social life. Allow yourself time to heal.
5. Enjoy Your Memories
Your parent may be gone, but the memories you shared will last forever. Don’t avoid thinking about the past. Let yourself remember the good times you had. Your parent can live through your fond thoughts and memories, and you’ll be able to enjoy their presence any time you want.
6. Forgive Yourself
Death can bring up a whole host of feelings, including guilt. You may feel guilty that you didn’t spend enough time with your parent, or that you didn’t call them enough to check in. You might be holding onto a fight the two of you had, wishing you didn’t say the things you did. One of the most important things you can do in order to heal is to forgive yourself. Focus on the good memories; that’s what your parent would want you to remember.
7. Unlock A New Chapter
It may feel impossible to continue living your life after losing someone you love. You may feel a void that you’re sure will never go away. While you will feel pain for a while, you may come out even stronger. Know that life is short, and it’s important to make the most of every minute. Spend time with the people you love and hold on to the things you cherish most. Your heart will heal.