• Understanding Grief

  • Grief is a response to loss-no matter what that loss may be. It could mean dealing with the loss of a loved one, facing the loss of a job or coping with a divorce. You may not know what to expect when you are challenged by such a loss as each of us experiences grief differently. However, there are some common responses to loss. Some emotions and physical sensations are:

    • Lack of energy or interest
    • Sudden crying episodes
    • Disorganization
    • Need to talk about the loss
    • Rapid mood swings
    • Sleep problems
    • Intense anger
    • Restlessness
    • Aimless wandering, forgetfulness
    • Difficulty concentrating

    Grieving is healthy and normal. It's a healing process essential to your well-being. Grief takes time; it can last several weeks or years. You can resolve your grief sooner and more successfully if you understand, accept and display your grief rather than deny it. You shouldn't try to protect yourself or others from the pain; this only prolongs the process. It is important to face your loss directly in order to deal with it positively.

    If you are having difficulty dealing with grief, please contact a hospital chaplain at 303-673-1266. We also offer Care Notes, literature designed to help you work through your grief. Sometimes it is also helpful to seek help from a professional counselor.

    Other resources

    The Centura Bereavement Center is l ocated in a residential area near Denver University and offers a warm, home-like environment. The Center offers grief support groups, one-on-one counseling, journaling workshops and aromatherapy classes for children and adults. www.centurabereavementcenter.org.

    No matter what your background, religious belief or culture, if you'd like more information on dealing with grief, we invite you to visit Center for Loss.

    Perinatal loss

    There are special resources for families who lose a child at or near the time of birth. The staff of the New Life Center at Avista is trained in the perinatal loss support program developed by RTS Bereavement Services. For information contact Chaplain Becky Carlisle at 303-673-1079.

    For more resources for perinatal loss see the March of Dimes website.

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