Many of us find comfort as well from our four legged, unconditionally loving companions.
Give yourself permission to grieve in your own way and time and to be very gentle and kind to yourself now.Lisa Athan serves as a grief consultant and grief counselor for teenagers, adults, families, groups and for communities following a loss of any type.Lisa has an office in Northern NJ, provides sessions via Skype and by phone, and also makes home visits or community calls as a consultant. Permission to Grieve When Your Children Go Away to College, is an article I wrote for parents who are experiencing grief over sending their children off to college.Many students shared their worries about transitioning to middle school.Others expressed feelings about changes in relationships with friends and situations in their families.For the griever, some words of wisdom from some of my grieving clients: Please know that you are not alone, even though you will feel that way, don't get too far ahead of yourself as it helps to stay in this very moment.When invitations come to you remind well meaning friends that you don't know how you will feel later today, let alone next Saturday, so ask them to be flexible. Crying can be helpful and you can do most things while crying, including driving, ordering pizza and walking the dog.Lisa shared healthy coping strategies with students and stressed the importance of asking for help when we need it, a lesson we can all use reminding of. I appreciated that the students were able to discuss sensitive, but extremely relevant topics in school that classroom teachers do not have time or the curriculum to address.Children discuss these topics with each other anyway.And know that there are many local and national resources and supports that can assist you at this very difficult time to make navigating a new normal a little less overwhelming. Life can be so challenging but there are always those who show up for us along the way and make us feel cared for and supported.They may not be the ones we expected to show up but if we trust a little bit and look around, we may be comforted by those who do.