“Sophia * and I had been married for more than 39 years when a prolonged illness took her life. I had plenty of support from friends, and I kept myself busy. But for a full year, I felt as if I were torn in half. My emotions would rise and fall, twist and turn. Even now, almost three years since her death, deep emotional pain occasionally strikes, and often without warning.”—Kostas.
Have you lost a loved one in death? If so, you may relate to Kostas’ expressions. Few things cause more stress or heartache than the death of a mate, relative, or dear friend. Experts who study the agony caused by grief agree with that. An article published in The American Journal of Psychiatry states that “death is the most obviously permanent and extreme form of loss.” Faced with the unbearable pain such a loss brings, one who grieves may wonder: ‘How long will these feelings last? Will I ever be happy again? How can I find relief?’
Answers to those questions are considered in this issue of Awake! The next article will discuss what you might anticipate if you have recently been bereaved. The subsequent articles will explore ways that may help you to lower the intensity of your grief.
We sincerely hope that what follows will be of comfort and practical help to anyone experiencing the agony of grief.
^ par. 3 Some names in this series of articles have been changed.