In this blog, Sam writes about her personal experience of grief , the different stages and how she has eventually found a way to move forward and live her loss. Together, we’re talking through the taboos of loss and death. Get in touch to share your story.
From the day I was born until the day she left, it was always me and Mum; we did everything together. She was my rock, my hero, my confidant. She brought out the best in me and taught me everything I needed to know – except how to live without her.
In November 2015 my whole world turned upside down when my mum passed away suddenly in hospital. We had no warning, no time for goodbyes. One minute she was here laughing and joking and the next she was gone. In a blink of an eye my life had changed, and I had absolutely no idea how I was going to get through it.
You find strength
I don’t know how, but you find the strength to keep going. Even when you’re crippled with grief you will find strength to make it through each day. Each anniversary that passes, each milestone, you will get through it. You will look back and realise how far you’ve come. You don’t know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have.
Remember it is natural
It is natural to feel guilt following a loss, with all of the what if’s and buts, and all the things you wish you had said. I felt guilty for carrying on living when my mum wasn’t. I felt guilty for all the things my mum will miss, moving in to my first house, my engagement, my wedding. My future children will never meet my Mum, but I will make sure they know everything about her. I will let them know they have the most beautiful guardian angel in heaven.
You are not alone
Following the death I felt so alone and lost. I had so much love and support around me and couldn’t understand why I felt so isolated in my grief. I took comfort in speaking with people who had experienced similar losses, I reached out to people through Facebook groups and blogs which helped me feel less alone.
Grief lasts as long as love does, forever
Reading books was an outlet for me, to understand grief and to help rationalise my thoughts and feelings. I would encourage you to speak to your family, friends or a therapist, don’t let things build up – you’ll feel better for it. Your support network is there for you, they want to help you, so let them in.
Allow yourself time
Allowing yourself to grieve is so important. Don’t put a timescale on it, the truth is you will never stop grieving. Grief lasts as long as love does, forever.
In school we are taught the essential skills but who teaches us about grief? Who tells us what to expect and how we should act? Death can be a taboo subject which we are all guilty of avoiding. Let’s face it, no one wants to talk about it but in reality it is something that will affect us all (morbid but true).
Time allows us to heal; it allows us to adjust to our new normal, to come to terms with the loss. You will never get over it but you will learn to live through it.
It’s been three and a half years since my mum passed away and I can say things do get easier. I will always grieve for my mum, I will always miss her, but I have now made it my purpose to live for her. I will live the life she was sadly denied.
My mum gave her everything to me and my sisters; everything she did was to ensure we had the best life. I don’t want all her hard work to be for nothing. She will always be with me, in everything I do. Every single day I have made it my mission to live in her honour.
My mum gave me life and made me the woman I am today, for that I will continue to make her proud.
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