Anticipatory grief is a thing. Really. Maybe you thought grief only happens after a loss, when you’ve actually lost someone you love. Anticipatory loss begins when you hear news of a terminal illness and impending loss. Sometimes with dementia one might experience anticipatory grief even before an official diagnosis. A part of you just knows.
Time to Say Goodbye
There are some wonderful and beautiful opportunities that come from knowing someone you love is going to die, even though mixed with shock, pain and sadness. (Yes, we understand intellectually that we all die but I’m talking, for the most part, about the moment it becomes real and a diagnosis is followed by a timeline and the prognosis isn’t good.) The good things that come from this is the fact that we have time to talk to our dying loved one and finish up any unfinished business. We can take the time to express love, or work through old pain and try out the possibility of forgiveness.
Love Lives On
Isn’t that true? Love does live on. It’s also a great name for a website that helps people deal with their grief. Here is a little interview I did for them: www.loveliveson.com on the subject of anticipatory grief.
For those who have already moved into the grief stage, our next bereavement support group will begin Monday, April 24th @ 7:00 pm. Contact us for the details. Meeting with trained bereavement educators and the support of others who have experienced the same loss as you have, is helpful in ways that are hard to imagine when grief is fresh. We can help.