Hey Hippies, Lexi here, a New Year is upon us and that usually comes with changes. Some good, some bad, and everything in between.
Unfortunately, my year started with grief, a whole mountain of it. January normally begins with celebration for me as my sister and I celebrate our birthdays. This year however we had to prepare to say good by to the man who raised me and was the only father figure I had my whole life, my grandpa. It has felt like my world has crashed around me ever since because on top of learning to navigate through the biggest loss I've ever experienced while trying to work and be a mom we also lost two of our dogs this month as well. The word numb is the best way to describe how I have been feeling.
This isn't being posted to seek sympathy though, this is posted to help others navigate through grief. It's hard and it comes in waves. I have been grateful to have been seeing a therapist for about a year now as well as through this, and I am here to tell you if you have the ability to see a therapist do it! As you read below I share with you a few things I have learned along the way and also things that I am trying to work on.
Grief is a natural response to loss, and it can be an incredibly challenging and overwhelming experience. Whether you have lost a loved one, experienced a breakup, or gone through any other form of loss, taking care of yourself during this time is crucial. Self-care is not selfish; it is a necessary part of the healing process. Here are some ways you can practice self-care through grief:
1. Allow Yourself to Feel
Grief is a complex and multifaceted emotion, and it is important to allow yourself to fully experience it. Give yourself permission to feel the pain, sadness, anger, and any other emotions that come up. Suppressing your feelings will only prolong the healing process.
2. Seek Support
Reach out to friends, family, or a support group who can provide a listening ear and a shoulder to lean on. Talking about your feelings and sharing your experiences can be incredibly therapeutic. Surround yourself with people who understand and support you.
3. Practice Self-Compassion
Be kind and gentle with yourself during this difficult time. Treat yourself with the same compassion and understanding that you would offer to a close friend. Practice self-compassion by engaging in activities that bring you joy and comfort.
4. Take Care of Your Physical Health
Grief can take a toll on your physical health, so it is important to prioritize self-care in this area. Make sure you are getting enough sleep, eating nutritious meals, and engaging in regular exercise. Taking care of your physical health can help improve your overall well-being.
5. Create a Self-Care Routine
Establishing a self-care routine can provide structure and stability during a time of grief. This routine can include activities such as journaling, practicing mindfulness or meditation, taking baths, going for walks in nature, or engaging in hobbies that bring you joy.
6. Seek Professional Help
If you find that your grief is interfering with your daily life and functioning, it may be beneficial to seek professional help. A therapist or counselor can provide guidance and support as you navigate through the grieving process.
7. Practice Patience
Grief is not a linear process, and it takes time to heal. Be patient with yourself and allow yourself to grieve at your own pace. Understand that healing is a journey, and there will be ups and downs along the way.
8. Engage in Activities That Bring You Comfort
Engaging in activities that bring you comfort can provide a sense of solace during times of grief. Whether it's reading a book, listening to music, watching a movie, or spending time in nature, find activities that bring you peace and make them a part of your self-care routine.
9. Practice Mindfulness
Mindfulness can help you stay present and grounded during the grieving process. Take time each day to practice mindfulness techniques such as deep breathing, body scans, or guided meditation. This can help alleviate stress and promote emotional well-being.
10. Be Gentle with Yourself
Above all, be gentle with yourself. Understand that grief is a natural response to loss, and it is okay to not be okay. Give yourself permission to grieve, and remember that healing takes time. Treat yourself with love, kindness, and compassion as you navigate through this challenging journey.
Remember, self-care is not a luxury; it is a necessity, especially during times of grief. By prioritizing self-care, you are giving yourself the love and support you need to heal and move forward.
Thank you Grandpa for all the years of love, support, and guidance. I owe everything of who I am to you. You were the best part of my life and I will continue to make you proud and share all my favorite stories about you.