Losing A Loved One Can Create Chaos.
NO doubt losing a loved one whether from death, divorce or deception will leave you devestated. Devestation is one of our darkest feelings we can feel. It comes from going through a shock and such grief that it flattens us and knocks us to the ground. We become lifeless ourselves, without motivation to thrive and it becomes difficult to breathe, put one foot in front of the other and function. Everyone has a different time frame as to when they can come back to a semblance of a "normal" life after being struck with the news of a great loss. When I practiced Psychotherapy for many years I had so many people ask me, "Marla, when will the pain go away"? I never had an answer. There is no correct answer. Everyone is different in how they process grief. I have seen someone lose a Turtle that they had loved for 30 years not recover from their grief for over a year, and men who have lost wives of 30 years remarry within six months. So you go ahead and try and figure out someone's time limit, and you will be wrong most of the time.
People, in general, are very uncomfortable with people who are grieving. I hear "get over it", and the problem with that is if you get over "it", "it" is still there, always chasing behind you. I always suggested "getting through it".
Going through the stages of loss, Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression and finally last but not least, Acceptance, is not as easy as it sounds. The stages do not go in sequence either. Most people do start off with Denial, but I have seen some people jump immediately into Anger, Bargaining or Depression, and the time they stay there, again, is different for everyone. Depression seems to be the stage most people attempt to avoid. I have seen people bounce between Denial, Bargaining and Anger for years to avoid the stage of Depression, which is absolutely a stage you cannot miss if you want to get to Acceptance.
The greatest example of Denial, was a 90 year woman I met almost 20 years ago. I went to visit this lady I had never met, since a family member asked me to check in on her. I had no idea who she was or about her life. When I arrived she invited me in and there was a giant painting of her husband in front of a cabin. There was a big bearskin rug on the floor. She proceeded to tell me all about her husband and how he was a bear hunter. She went on and on about her husband, and I could see a pipe on her living room furniture and men's object about the home. Finally it was getting late, and I asked her when her husband would be home. She nearly jumped out of her skin and turned pale as a ghost. She stated, "my husband has been dead for over 30 years". I then jumped out of my skin and turned white as a ghost. We scared the crap out of each other. I told her how sorry I was and then shuffled home, certain this lady had jumped out of some denial system that had been fixed for some time. Sure enough I had a message on my phone, when I returned home, from the family member of this woman, asking me not to bring up her husband and mention that he died. It seemed this woman for the past 30 some years had told everyone her husband was still alive and well. She had never even donated or rid herself of his clothing and or personal items. Oddly enough, when I asked her when he would be home, since I assumed he was still around, it had the opposite affect and popped her out of denial.
Disorganization will follow Devestation. It would be hard to still want to get up, clean the kitchen, do laundry, mow the lawn and make a healthy dinner when you are in Devestation Daze. My suggestion is to grieve properly. Allow yourself to experience the Grief until you can breathe, eat and sleep again in a natural pattern.
During periods of Grief and Loss, a friend, family member and if necessary a Professional Organizer will be a great support and help to you so that your self and space can be protected from great chaos and loss of function.
www.I-Deal-Lifestyle.com can provide you with Self and Space Organization services in your time of need. Call 949-709-7000 for a free 30 minute consultation.
Marla earned her BA in Psychology and a Master's in Social Work and is the founder of I-Deal-Lifestyle, a Self and Space Organization Service.