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Five Strategies to Clear the Way for a Grief Breakthrough

The loss of a loved one is difficult enough but what often follows are impossible questions, bitter anger and self-accusatory thoughts that nag us with what ifs and should-have-dones.

What lifts us out of the quicksand of such a situation and puts us on the path of healing? What puts lingering questions to rest and transforms pit-sinking sorrow into peace?

woman in brown coat and purple scarf holding silver tablet

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I believe the course of our grief changes with breakthroughs, aka epiphanies, or “aha” moments. I adopted the term “revelations” the year after my dad died. Whatever the name, these are sudden, transformative thoughts or realizations that shift our perspective and give us healing.

I experienced a series of breakthroughs that helped me forgive myself as a stressed-out caregiver to Mom. I accepted the inability to be perfectly loving and knowing. I accepted her dire need to control things. Her world was falling apart. She was trying to cope, and I was, too, in our individually different ways.

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Shut In & Sad: 9 Coping Strategies

I thought I needed to get around people. What I needed was to be alone.

I’m a loner of sorts. A homebody. An introvert. I was raised by a woman who left the house only two or three times a year. When the stay-at-home orders came down amid COVID-19 fears, I thought “I’ve got this.” I was right – for about a week.

woman inside the car

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Don’t get me wrong. I love my husband, and I love his company. The primary breadwinner, he took over my home office. I willingly gave up my chair, but I itched to go to the coffee shop and hang around perfect strangers. And go for walks. Alone.

And then as the days wore on, I got angry. Not at my hubby. I believed I was angry at being confined. Have you ever been sad-angry? Or angry-sad? I think that was my affliction. I wasn’t afraid. I was angry.

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What Does “God is in Control” Really Mean?

We hear the phrase slip out of the lips of well-meaning friends at funerals – and we hear it now that a pandemic seeds fear and anxiety into our hearts and lives.

But what does “God is in control” really mean?

woman wearing sunhat

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First, what it does not mean?

It does not mean God sets out to harm us.  He is not pitted against us. He is not a puppet master out to get you, to poke you until you bleed. Nor is He uncaring.

That’s what we hear sometimes, though. A husband, brother or father dies and someone tells us “God is in control” and we think, “God caused this death? God caused him to suffer? God wants me to suffer?”

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