Have you ever been asked this question by family or friends? Popular culture suggests there’s a timeline for grief and after it’s finished, everything should return to almost normal – we’ll achieve “closure” and things will be peachy. For many of us who have experienced loss, grief timelines and the concept of closure aren’t right.
Just as we are all different and have unique experiences and responses to life situations, so our journey with grief can be quite different from each others. While there is much that unites us in the grief experience, there are lots of differences as well in how we learn to cope, recover and go on. Closure is really more of a myth than reality and striving for it can only create more pain.
Recently comedian Patton Oswalt lost his wife suddenly and unexpectedly. He’s written an essay in the New York Times titled I’ll never be 100 percent again describing how he has thrown himself into performing to manage his grief, calling it “a rebuke to grief, an acceptance of the messiness of life. I’ll never be at 100 percent again, but that won’t stop me from living through this.”
One of our favourite authors, Carol Brody Fleet also recently wrote a column on this topic in the Huffington Post entitled Why there is no such thing as getting over loss and what to focus on instead.
What’s your experience been? Have you ever been asked if you are over it and how long you are going to grieve? Use the comment box to let us know your thoughts.