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Grieving Your Departed Loved One

You may have arrived at this page because you have recently lost someone you love.  Grief is a deep, sometimes disabling, emotion completely normal for such a loss.  All of us experience it some time in our lives. How we cope with it may in fact shape the rest of our lives.

Life itself is a gift, whether you conceive of God in a particular religious sense or not.  Love is always the root cause of grief: we grieve because we have lost someone with whom we have shared love.  The good news is that Life goes on for us. The gift of being in this beautiful world and finding new mercies every day is still ours, even if we feel lost in the depths of grief.

Everyone experiences grief differently, but the most important thing is to allow yourself to go through it.  Grief denied or closed up inside makes us ill. Grief shared in some way - through the traditional funeral rites, another kind of gathering of friends and family, in journaling or painting or music, in the privacy of a counseling session -- will eventually heal.  Do not be afraid to reach out to others in your grief, to helping professionals: clergy, mental health centers, physicians and nurses and even funeral directors will refer you to help, If you are not ready to meet with an individual, many hospitals and churches offer grief groups. Books on grief may help.

It is important to separate grief from any residual guilt created by your loss. You have done the best you can for your loved one and dwelling in the past about what might have happened differently will not help you or enhance the memory of your loved one.  Whether you or your departed one have chosen cremation, for reasons of environment or cost or ease, rest assured they will be at peace whatever the ultimate destination. An appropriate choice of cremation urn will be your gift to celebrate his or her life, and to keep on living your life in their honor.

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