Grief During Those Special Days


Grievers may experience unconscious memories that creep in around “special days.” These are days that might be highly charged with memories and can often occupy us much more than we realize.

If your like me, there are other reasons for some challenging days. I’d like to address some thoughts about grief.

Grief is:

  1. The conflicting feelings following the end of, or change in, a change of familiar pattern or behavior.
  2. The lost hopes, dreams, and expectations when a relationship changes or ends.

What if, since you were a child, your father sent you flowers every Valentine’s Day, but now he has Alzheimer’s, so isn’t able to? Isn’t that a change of a familiar pattern or behavior?

What if, after your last break up, you thought you’d find a boyfriend and finally have the perfect date for Valentine’s Day, but you’re still single? Isn’t that a hope, dream, or expectations that didn’t come to fruition?

What if, every Valentine’s Day you think about your ex-wife and miss planning romantic Valentine’s Day dates? Then realize you thought you’d be spending the holiday together for the rest of your lives? Isn’t that grief?

What to do if you feel sad and/or bad habits to avoid feeling have escalated:

  1. Be aware. If you notice you are out of the moment, thinking about the past, acknowledge it.
  2. Tell the truth about yourself. If you are sad, say so. Find a loving friend with whom you can share your honest feelings with.
  3. Get in the moment. After telling the truth about what is preoccupying your thoughts, see if you can get back in the moment by focusing on what is in front of you.
  4. Be honest. Ask yourself if there were things you wish would have ended different, better, or more. If so, you might be incomplete with the relationship you are thinking about. Until you get complete with that relationship you capacity for happiness will be limited.

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