No one can tell you that how you are grieving is right or wrong. Everyone grieves differently. However, we often care so much about what other people think that we will try to model the way we mourn by other people’s opinions. Society has a certain unspoken belief that everyone’s grief should fit a certain shaped mold. It’s as if they take a big wad of dough – roll it out – and grab their grief shaped cookie mold. They stamp out a bunch of grief shaped cookie dough, and they say, “There! This is what grief should look like, and if it doesn’t fit in this mold, there is something wrong with you.”
Obviously, there are some normal reactions to grief that most people experience. A list of common reactions to grief might look something like this: Anger; anxiety; difficulty concentrating or thinking; confusion; weeping (or not crying at all); disbelief; fatigue; fear; frustration; guilt; irritability; feeling isolated; hurting heart; loneliness; numbness; peace; relief; resent; restless; sadness; yearning; and many others. This is only a partial list, but as you can see there are a myriad of normal reactions to grief. There are also many physical reactions that are mentioned throughout this book. The point is, you are not losing your mind. Grief is hard work – it is painful – and it takes on many different forms unique to every individual.
Grief can seem to distort time. Often one second can seem like an hour. Consider for a moment what can take place in just one second. One small second may make a difference in an outcome. In many of the Olympic competitions, a fraction of a second can be the difference between a gold medal, and not getting a medal at all. One small inch can be the deciding factor in a winner or a loser. We make many decisions every waking hour of every day. A decision may take a fraction of a second to make. We may not even be consciously aware that we have made a decision. Yet that decision may make an impact on much of the rest of our lives. Sometimes a tragedy can be averted in a decision that takes less than a second. A life may be lost or saved in mere seconds.
Hearing bad news may suddenly seem to cause time to slow down. Our minds are remarkable machines. Our mind can begin working so fast when we are threatened in some way that time seems to slow down to a crawl. We may feel like our feet are stuck to the ground, or as if we are moving through molasses. In reality, time is not slowing down; our mind is just working much faster and more efficiently than normal. Just as in a traumatic incident, such as a car crash, our minds will begin working so fast as to make it seem like time has slowed down. It is a safety measure our brain takes in order to help us survive.
There is an old saying that Humanity lives in a component of time and space. We measure time in this dimension in years, months and weeks - hours, minutes and seconds – But God moves between the seconds. Though we are limited in our...