It grabs you by the throat until you can barely breathe. Grief is, in a word, ghastly and can even turn the coolest character into a puddle of sobs and sniffles. Here, 12 FOFs share their tactics for wrestling with grief.
“After my dad died (eight years ago), I unconsciously immersed myself into my work, anything to take the pain away. If I was working, I wasn’t thinking about him. I took on way more than I should have, and once you take on something where I worked, it’s yours forever. Four years later, my mom died so I did the rinse/repeat deal and was working 60 to 65 hours a week. After 17 years at a job I loved, this past November I had to quit due to some major health issue caused by extreme stress that I’m still dealing with. Moral: What you think will help with the grief isn’t always what’s best for you. Think of you first, practice moderation and give yourself time.” —Jodi Smith Rasar
“I had a young friend named Derek, who passed away on July 26th. I was heartbroken and miss him horribly, his laugh, his voice, his joy, just his all-around presence. I planted the sweetest little tree in the middle of my front yard. It bloomed it’s first flower on his birthday (weird, huh?). It may seem trivial to some, but that little tree seems to make me feel better every time I look at it. It makes me smile. I still listen to his voice mails just to hear his voice. I’m sure it’ll get better in time.” —Darlene Chavez Gonzalez
“The only that thing can get you through grief is giving yourself the time to get through it. Time is the key word.” —Diane Echevarria Thompson
“Time, try to get involved with people that understand. Cherish the memories, and make new ones, love again, and be happy.” —Irene T. Flemming