The first year is the hardest and so are the second and the third. There is a false notion that once you make it through the first year without your loved one that things will become easier. This is not the case. After one year, society expects you to be “over it”, “moving on”, “back to normal”, etc. Those around you are often no longer interested in listening to your story and become less patient with your grief. This is unfortunate because you, the bereaved, are just at the point of accepting the reality that your loved one is gone…forever. You are just starting to grieve and your friends, family and society have moved on.
As a grief facilitator I am the bearer of “bad news”. You must grieve; it is painful and takes a long time. I wish I had a list of tasks for those in grief to complete in a step by step fashion for healing from loss in a four week course. Unfortunately this is not how grief works. Each grief journey is unique in its length and its course.
As you move through the grief process, the pain and vulnerability of loss lessens, but the loss is not something you get over or move on from, you simply learn to live with it.
I share this “bad news” in hopes that this information about grief will help you understand why years after the death of your loved one you still feel waves of grief and the pain of loss. You are not going crazy…it is normal grief behavior.