The first thing I got wrong about grief is closure. In bereavement, there is no such thing. There is the process. There is gradual healing. But because things will never get back to the way they were there is no such thing as the typical emotional closure at all. I hope there would be. I was HOPING there would be and so many people do, but actually accepting that things will not get back to “normal” might just help the healing process.
I grief a lot nowadays myself. I grieve over Brexit. I grieve over the last 10 years in the small town (we are moving to Bristol in a few days, so I am reviewing the life in this small town a lot at the moment and the last few years are actually pretty depressing). I grieve the industry I decided to leave. I grieve the people I lost due to the changes in the way I approach life. I have reinvented a lot of areas of my life and it has gotten so much better, but there is a part of me which really misses the old, the familiar times. Managing change, if it is quite drastic, can feel a bit like grief. Things will never be the same and I am learning to let things go and embrace the new ways of living.
I really liked this paragraph in one of the articles about closure in bereavement, as it sums up how I feel at the moment and gives me energy and hope:
While there isn’t really “closure,” there is healing. Someone once said, “You don’t heal from a loss because time passes, you heal because of what you do with the time.” It is important to allow yourself to feel your feelings, talk about your loss, think about what has happened to you and your family, face fears that may test your courage, and try doing new things. It also is important to stay healthy by eating nutritious food, sleeping well, and with physical activity that helps to relieve stress or anxiety.