20 Feb Rebuilding My Now and My Future: When and How?
Rebuilding My Now and My Future: When and How?
After trudging through and processing the initial heartbreak and pain and emotional chaos brought about by the death—there comes a time when life and your mind begin to calm down. Emotions that exploded into painful chaos after the death begin to settle back down and to become comfortable together again for longer periods of time between surges of grief. We feel changed but somehow normal again. Even though this normal is different than the normal that we were used to, the normal that we understood. It is at this point that we are able to look toward the future and begin to imagine it—without our loved one.
Since we each grieve differently we each arrive at this point in our healing on our own personal healing timetable. It can take a month or a year or two. (Another reason why grieving family members drive each other nuts!) The reality is that most of the time it takes a while to get back to functioning at the level that you were functioning at before the death occurred. Why wouldn’t it? Don’t minimize what you have been through and how hard you are working!
Once you realize that you are at this point it’s helpful to set a few new goals for yourself. You may also find that you are wanting to establish new friendships and maybe even reestablish relationships with people that you moved away from early in grief. It’s a time of trying new things and deciding whether or not you like them. If your spouse has died it may mean planning a retirement just for you. If your child has died it may mean redecorating your child’s room as a way of reclaiming it for yourself or for other children in your family. Maybe it’s time to finish your degree or to take a fun class. Making changes, setting goals and learning new things is what helps push us forward in our healing. This is an individual process. We each make our own new roadmap.
What you may not realize is that you have been rebuilding your life since the day your loved one died. Because rebuilding and grief work go hand in hand. We rebuild with the decisions and the choices that we make daily. And you are doing a darn good job!
Healing Forward Action Step: If you are ready—set one new short term goal and one new long term goal for yourself.