I learned a new term in the grief vernaculum: cumulative grief.
It can be grief due to multiple losses at once, or repeated losses over a short period. A “short” time is relative too. It can be loss of loved ones or friends, in addition to loss of independence, identity, home or purpose, as the elderly in their late years can experience.
Cumulative grief can be more difficult and complex.
Another difficult type of grief is the loss of a child. Yes – adult child too.
I take an inventory of my last 29 months: I have lost my 19 year old son, two dear aunts, a loving uncle, and now my sisters and I are caring for our ailing aunt after her major stroke. ….
Can you say GRIEF OVERLOAD???
As I am ever the researcher I read about what I am experiencing. What to do, what not to do.
What can I do to take care of myself? I know self care is a priority. That is why I say no sometimes.
When I feel I have to wear my mask of “normalcy” too much, I take it off and I let my emotions out. I know I cannot ignore my feelings. And that means sometimes I want to be alone. Because I know my intense grief is not easy to be around and quite frankly it even brings me down sometimes.
And sometimes I cry to the point of being tired of crying and feeling sad.
Other times I am good to be around others where the little things of life are talked and complained about and I feel I can relate. Lately these times are not as often as I would like, and that is hard, but it won’t be that way forever.
I cannot rush this time. Although it is really really hard to not feel tired from it and I wish I would have this intensely sorrowful time of my life be behind me, I cannot.
I loved all these people that are gone now. My love for them did not go away with their passing. Thus I grieve intensely. As much as I loved them intensely.