When Caregiving Ends: Metaphors For Grief and Grieving

When Caregiving Ends: Metaphors For Grief and Grieving

The defining features of the Closing LifeStage of Caregiving are change, loss, grief and grieving, rebuilding, and renewal.

We don’t really understand the experience of grief and grieving until we, well, experience it. Once you experience a significant loss, you never forget what grieving feels like. This can actually result in empathy or greater empathy for others who are experiencing a loss. Because grieving can be intense or at least have moments of intensity, embodying all parts of ourselves: the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual, it is often difficult to describe to others. Daily functioning can be difficult which is why the support and assistance from others is so valuable. This is why our freezers can be full of casseroles as our network of supporters recognizes the challenge of basic daily activities.

Because grief and grieving is so difficult to explain, people are often drawn to the world of analogies and metaphors to describe how they are feeling. Whether you know the difference between an analogy and a metaphor is irrelevant - this isn’t an English lesson! You do know how grief and grieving feels. It can be consoling to know that others have felt how you have felt (or are feeling), and to know that others understand the depth of your feelings. Can you relate to any of the following examples?

Grief is a tidal wave that over takes you,

Smashes down upon you with unimaginable force,

Sweeps you up into its darkness,

Where you tumble and crash against unidentifiable surfaces,

Only to be thrown out on an unknown beach, bruised, reshaped…

-Stephanie Ericsson

these tears are a beautiful waltz, but I am so tired of dancing

-Jessica Katoff

Grief makes one hour ten.” 

-Shakespeare

Grief is…standing in a room full of people and feeling completely alone in the world.

-John Pete

Her absence is like the sky, spread over everything.”

-CS Lewis

Deep grief sometimes is almost like a specific location, a coordinate on a map of time. “

-Elizabeth Gilbert

Grief is a most peculiar thing; we’re so helpless in the face of it. It’s like a window that will simply open of its own accord. The room grows cold, and we can do nothing but shiver. But it opens a little less each time, and a little less; and one day we wonder what has become of it.”   

-Arthur Golden

There is an ocean of silence between us… and I am drowning in it.”  

-Ranata Suzuki

Sometimes, only one person is missing, and the whole world seems depopulated.”

-Alphonse de Lamartine

Grief creates its own weather. At times, it’s an avalanche that buries us, or a thunderstorm that buffets us around. It’s a cold rain that drips off trees and down our backs long after the storm is gone. It’s a fog that hides the world and makes every sound seem distant.

-Mark Lievenow

Hope and Renewal:  Life After Loss?

Grief is a funny thing because you don't have to carry it with you for the rest of your life. After a bit you set it down by the roadside and walk on and leave it resting there.”
-Rosamunde Pilcher, September

“The better we grieve, the better we live
-Anonymous

The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain.”

-Khalil Gibran

In three words I can sum up everything I’ve learned about life: it goes on.”

-Robert Frost

Ain’t no shame in holding on to grief…as long as you make room for other things too.” 

-“Bubbles”, The Wire

“Although the world is full of suffering, it is full also of the overcoming of it.”

-Helen Keller

“Grief never ends…but it changes. It’s a passage, not a place to stay. Grief is not a sign of weakness, nor a lack of faith…It is the price of love.” 

-Author unknown

Caregivers, what does grief and grieving look like for you? What gives you hope?

 

Comments

Close

Order a Service

()-
(UTC - 05:00)
Close

Want to order service?

 

Or drop us your email address, and we'll get back to you:


 
Close

Share Your Caregiver Story

We review and post new submissions weekly and we are always looking for new “Faces of Caregiving”.

Yes, you may post my submission and contact me.
Close

Have a Caregiving Question?

Submit your caregiving question to our experts. Our experts review the questions we receive regularly, and we share our responses to the questions that we think are most relevant to the whole community.

Yes, you may post my submission and contact me.
Close

Contact us to discuss your results

 

Have a question?
Chat live with a member of our care solutions team Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm!

Live Chat
 
 

Or drop us your email address, and we'll get back to you: