Tuesday, October 6, 2015

31 Days of Grief: Day 6

I found this little information sheet as I was cleaning up my bedroom today.  It was an information sheet in the folder the hospital sent home with us.  The folder was entitled, Information and Resources for Grieving Parents.  I hate that it's the second time we've received that folder.  I hate that others have to go home with it too.  

Anyway, this particular sheet is colored lavender and labeled, Four Phases of Normal Grief: Feelings and Indicators.  There is a footnote citing where this information came from: Glen Davidson, Understanding Mourning, 1984*.  So, while it might be dated, I found a lot of this to be true for myself and wanted to share.  

Four Phases of Normal Grief: Feelings and Indicators

1. Shock and Numbness
(most intense during first two weeks)

Attention span is short
Concentration is difficult
Decision making is impaired
Stunned, disbelief
Time confusion
Failure to accept reality

2. Searching and Yearning

Sensitive to stimuli
Anger, guilt
Restless, impatient
Irritability, resentment, bitterness
Weight gain or loss
Sleep difficulties
Aching arms (in pregnancy loss)
Obsession with getting pregnant again
Preoccupation with the deceased
Time confusion
Palpitations, headaches, blurred vision
Lack of strength
Perception confirmation is the key to helping

3. Disorientation

Feelings of going crazy
Social withdrawal 
Awareness of reality
Weight gain or loss
Sense of failure
Difficulty concentrating
Feeling ill
Lack of energy

4. Reorganization/Resolution

Sense of release
Renewed energy
Able to make decisions easier
Eating and sleeping habits reestablished
Able to laugh and smile again
Reinvesting emotionally 

If I had to guess where I was, maybe in that third phase.  That sounds a lot like me these days.  I don't feel like I'm going crazy, but maybe that's just because I've been here before and am all too familiar with the me brain no worky phase of grief.  And I'm tired.  

Anyway, I am very grateful for information like this to help people like me realize their grief symptoms are completely normal.  I'm looking forward to that last "resolution" phase very much.  Until then, the only way through is through.  

*I have not read this book myself but it did receive decent, although few, reviews on Amazon

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