Understanding and working through grief isn’t without its challenges. Although you may have weeks or months to prepare, knowing you’re going to lose a loved one. It isn’t something you’re always ready for and that’s okay.


Grief affects us all differently and there is no timescale for working through grief. Fortunately, many of us will come through grief with a better understanding of how we feel. Initially, we may wander and get lost for a while, and that’s okay too, or we may wait until we’re feeling mentally ready to accept that we need to deal with how we feel. Others may feel they don’t need to grieve.


Grief is personal, not everyone will feel the same about grief. It is, however, helpful to understand the workings of your relationship and of your experiences. The more I understood my relationship, and the more I understood my experiences, the easier my grief felt. I was able to place things better.

When it comes to siblings, they may approach grief differently. One sibling may be inconsolable, where another sibling may not understand the complexities. The third sibling may acknowledge how they feel, but may throw themselves into work, ignoring the fact they need to deal with how they feel, their grief. Although grief is individual according to the complexities of our relationship, grief is universal. It’s something we all get to deal with.


But however, you deal with grief, there is a light at the end of the ‘grieving tunnel.’ In my own case, when my mother was diagnosed with terminal lung cancer, and she was focused on having treatment abroad, I was overwhelmed with the whole concept I might not see her again before she passed. Through the other end, my spiritual beliefs made the process of grieving easier.


When it came to losing my twin, my beliefs helped me to focus, to understand what she went through. Beliefs not only help us to focus on something other than grief, but together with our intuition, can bring understanding where we may not have had it before.

But for many, grief can be scary because they may encounter feelings they have never previously experienced before. Death can feel final, and coupled with the grieving process, can be daunting. In my formative years, it all felt overwhelming and scary.

I remember having to go to my grandmother’s funeral at the age of 21 and struggling to think about or comprehend her ‘passing over.’ I was overwhelmed with grief. Although I hated the experience, it did pave the way for better understanding of the process.


If death was more openly spoken about and we talked about our loved ones more, I think we would fare better through the grieving process. Death is part of life, therefore it is perhaps something we should give more thought to.

Whatever your beliefs, I hope that what I have written here, can help bring a new thinking and understanding for those who are working through the ‘grieving process.’

Read more by Ilana at www.thecpdiary.com

Read Ilana elsewhere on Open to Hope: https://www.opentohope.com/losing-a-loved-one-makes-you-grow-up/

Ilana Estelle

Ilana was born with a disability she didn’t know she had until the age of 46, when something her mum said caused her to look further into her disability and sight of her medical notes revealed that she had been diagnosed with cerebral palsy at the age of 2. That discovery turned out to be a unique and life-changing experience that has forced Ilana to stand back and look at her life’s experiences differently. On receipt of her diagnosis, Ilana set up her website, The CP Diary and uses her experiences to explore her emotional and physical health, with an inspiring message advocating positivity, resilience and change. Ilana likes to spend her days writing and blogging about anything that contributes to her health and wellbeing. She is an animal advocate and is passionate about environmental issues. When she is not writing or tending to her blog, Ilana enjoys days out exploring the Yorkshire countryside. Ilana lives with her husband in Yorkshire. Her grown up son and daughter both live in London.

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