Adapted from a recent online discussion.
Carolyn: The love of my life was killed last weekend in a car accident. I am lost. What do I even begin to do? Everyones asking me what I need and I dont even know. My head is full of questions. What am I going to do now that the future I planned is gone? Where do I even sit at the funeral? His parents are beyond kind, but there is no official role for the girlfriend. And Im afraid to think about him or my future. Im afraid that if I let go Ill fall into a deep, dark well that I may never come out of.
I am meeting with a grief counselor today. Any thoughts on things that have worked for people? I dont know what else to do.
Oh, I am so sorry.
The only answer to What do I do? is this: Get by. You dont need to accomplish anything, answer anything, figure out anything right now. You just dont. Right now is for raw grief; anything else can wait until you feel ready for it. When your friends ask what you need, dont be afraid to say, I have no idea. When you get to the funeral, you will sit where someone steers you to sit, and if no one steers you, just choose a seat with people you love. As for your future, your future is this evening, and this evening, your future will be tomorrow morning, and so on. Shorten it into something you are capable of managing, even if your future becomes an hour from now.
Enlisting the help of a grief counselor says you are indeed functioning, and thats something you can count on.
Re: Grief: I am so sorry. Think of yourself as a tree whose best branch was cut off. Eventually the wound grows over and you get other branches, but that branch never comes back. You have a future, just nothing like what it was.
You might want to try support groups, so you can talk with others who understand an unbearable loss. It actually helps.
I dont think its productive to assign value to any one branch of our love. Theyre all different, they all matter in different ways, and thats the most anyone can say.
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