A Child's View: Getting Through the Winter

BY: Andy Getz, LISW-S

CATEGORY: Grief and Loss

If you are reading this, you may recently have lost someone you love. You may clearly remember the moment you heard that your loved one had died. You may remember where you were and who you were with, or you may be able to recall very little about that moment. It has probably been a stormy time, filled with many overwhelming feelings like anger, sadness, worry and fear. You may have held feelings in your body and experienced stomach aches, headaches or tiredness. 

The world may feel topsy turvy, filled with questions like "Why did this have to happen?" or "How will things ever be OK again?" But, grief like the seasons, does change.

As we watched the fall leaves change color, we became aware that change is all around us. The leaves turned and fell, the trees became bare, but soon spring will emerge with its beautiful blossoms and leaves. Some change is painful, like the loss of a loved one. With time and help and hope we can emerge from it to find beauty in the world and in our lives.

In the coming months, remember to take care of your hurt and heartache at the loss you have endured. Allow time to slowly get used to your suffering by paying attention to what you are feeling and what will comfort you. 

Know that you can:

  • Talk about and express your feelings to someone you trust
  • Ask for comfort and hugs when you need it
  • Write down your thoughts and memories
  • Spend time with friends engaging in activities you enjoy
  • Move your body: run, jump and play
  • Eat healthy food
  • Get enough sleep
  • Create memories of your loved one (make a scrapbook, plant a tree, organize a fundraiser)

​Slowly, as you flow through the seasons, you will sense change within you. You will hold your loved one in your heart forever, the stories and memories you shared are a part of you. The pain of missing will gradually soften. Just as the snow will melt and green buds will appear for spring, notice the healing within you, how time has allowed you to grieve. 

The seasons will continue to turn and life will present opportunities and challenges. May time and the grief journey allow you to grasp the beauty that surrounds you and is within you. May the stormy skies become gentler as you attend to your sorrow and embrace the joyful life that awaits you.​

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