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The Ways People Grieve

Every Heart is Different

At some point in your life, you are going to experience the grief that comes with the loss of someone you love and care about, whether directly or indirectly. When there is someone in your life that is going through a grieving process, it helps to know the different forms that grief can take. Our mission at Weathered Raindrop is to provide our customers with items that help them and the people they love cope with their loss through gifts of memorial wind chimes and mementos — but we also care about our customers enough to engage in these difficult topics. We hope that this brief exploration of the different types of grief can help you better understand what you or a loved one is experiencing.

Anticipatory Grief

As the name suggests, this type of grief occurs when the loss of someone you care about is impending. This is most common when someone is diagnosed with a terminal illness or is only given a short amount of time left to live. This type of grief is the mind’s way of mentally preparing itself for the loss that is on the horizon. Usually, in this stage of grief, people feel inclined to make amends with each other, to forgive each other for past hurts, and to express how much they love each other. Although many of these actions are helpful in emotionally dealing with impending loss, the reality of the situation can lead many people who are susceptible to depression to spiral into grief. 

Traumatic Grief

When the loss of a loved one is unexpected, sudden, or violent in nature, you can experience what is called “traumatic grief.” The unexpected shift in reality can be completely disorienting to people, having their world turned upside-down in an instant. A person’s pain can be compounded during this type of grief, because on top of the normal pain of grieving, they are also dealing with the pain of being traumatized. This can be an incredibly confusing, painful time for a grieving person, full of emotional triggers, and sometimes even post-traumatic stress symptoms. 

Loss

Many people, in their grief over a loved one, will experience a general feeling of loss, or that an intrinsic part of their lives is now void. Grieving is our natural, human response to the breaking of an attachment bond, bonds that we had no conscious intention of ever breaking. When faced with that reality, overwhelming feelings of loss can occur. Even though a person has passed away, our attachment to them remains, and this dissonance between feeling attached and facing the reality that someone has died can lead to feelings of numbness, anxiety, and even denial. We depend on attachments as human beings, from the time we are infants, and when one of those beloved attachments is severed, it can be painful and disorienting. 

The Pangs of Grief

Sometimes, even after a significant period of time has passed since the loss of a loved one occurred, people can experience short, powerful bursts of emotion referred to as “grief pangs.” These pangs usually occur unexpectedly, and can include feelings of intense yearning, longing, and a general preoccupation with the person who has passed away. As a result of feeling these things, it’s possible to spiral into anxiety or emotional emptiness. Think of these bursts, these pangs, as being the longing to reunite with the loss of a loved one finally bubbling up to the surface, no longer being able to be held at bay, until those feelings overflow and need a place to vent. Your mind and heart are trying to cope with an irreparable loss, and every once in a while, it just gets to be too much, and you experience a grief pang. 

Unresolved Grief

Some people may experience a form of grief that stems from unresolved feelings towards the person who passed away. For example, a parent or sibling that had a falling out in their relationship, and having passed away suddenly, was never able to fully repair that bond. Guilt towards the lost individual can be present in this complicated form of grief, complicated because it has no opportunity to find resolution. When you lose someone with whom you had “unfinished business,” so to speak, it can lead to feelings of confusion, frustration, guilt, depression, and anxiety. Many times, the assistance of professional therapists is vital to finding peace in these types of grieving scenarios. 

Recovering

Time may or may not heal all wounds, but over time, the overwhelming pain that is associated with the loss of a loved one will subside. Those feelings won’t be all-consuming. When you or someone you care about is experiencing grief symptoms during bereavement, the important thing to do is let them know you are available for support, that you care about them and their well-being, and that they are not alone in their grief. Even years after a loss occurred, grief can surface, but it won’t be as debilitating— it will be a form of recovery grief, where we remember our loved one fondly, see the ways that their memories and contributions to our own lives live on, and that a part of them will always be with us.

Remember Loved Ones With Personalized Wind Chimes

Our whole heart at Weathered Raindrop is to be a helpful resource for people experiencing different forms of grief. We believe that gifting a loved one who is hurting with special gifts, or creating your own personalized wind chime or urn, can help to be a balm to the soul during these times. We hope that this exploration of grief has been helpful and beneficial to you! If you have any questions regarding the ways that you can customize our products to speak love to your friends and family, please, do not hesitate to contact us! The gentle nature of our product design is meant to provide feelings of peace, gratitude, remembrance, and a shelter where you can weather any storm. Thank you for taking the time to read this! We look forward to speaking with you.