As I continue to meet others on this grief journey one of the most common questions I get is, “How long will grief last?” That seems to be the million-dollar question. Wouldn’t it be nice if there was a definitive answer? Instead of being a one-size-fits-all, the road from grief to peace and acceptance differs for all of us.
If others recognized that each person grieves in their own way and time frame, this may pave the way for acceptance. No one would feel any pressure to get through it quickly. Nor would anyone feel shame or guilt if they haven’t processed their grief like others imagine they should.
How many of us have had someone tell us we should be over it by now? I know I had someone tell me this at the 7-month mark after Melanie ran ahead to heaven. It was like a slap in the face. I’m thankful for grace and understanding because even during my grief, I knew they had no clue what it was like to lose a child. And, for their sake, I’m glad they don’t.
We would all agree that navigating the choppy waters of grief can be very challenging. Grief affects many things – marriages, siblings, the change to the entire family dynamic, and a feeling of helplessness, especially in the early days.
Yet, as time progresses, my hope and prayer for each of us is that we can find that the road from grief to peace and acceptance is possible.
While we are still here on this earth, we have the opportunity to make an impact on the lives of others. We can share our testimony of where we’ve been and how God has brought us through the valley of the shadow of death.
As we move beyond the valley into a place of peace and acceptance, we must realize that we are not leaving our loved ones behind. But instead, we are moving forward in their honor and memory, taking them with us along every step. There is hope during loss!
It reminds me of the scripture in Ecclesiastes 3:
“There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under the heavens:
a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,
a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,
a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,
Something to think about – may you begin to allow your heart to be healed as you move along this journey, and may you laugh and dance again one day.