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How To Accept The Death Of A Loved One

Discussion in 'General Discussions' started by nakshatra1, Sep 23, 2020.

  1. nakshatra1

    nakshatra1 Platinum IL'ite

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    When our loved ones are alive, we worry so much about their well being, to protect them from loneliness, sadness, disease and failure. When they get really aged, somewhere we know their time is near even though we dont want to accept it - it feels us with so much fear , and we keep praying to God let them be healthy till the end, let them not suffer.
    But one day, they died in painful condition- how to accept that?
    And now after they left, we dont really know what happened to them- how to accept that? We have our religious beliefs, but we dont know what exactly happened to them after death- how to accept the person for whom you all were so protective is now gone and alone?
    Just we pray to God that God will take care of them better than we have. Thats all we can do.
     
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  2. SGBV

    SGBV Finest Post Winner

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    Dear @nakshatra1

    You touched a chord in me, and brought back all the memories of my dad's last rites.
    It happened just over a decade back on an unexpected time. Dad was never sick, and we were not even thinking about his departure that time.
    He died of a sudden heart attack, and that collapsed our entire world.

    However, as fatherless kids, we had no choice but to bear all the responsibilities towards his last rites and rituals immediately after his death.
    The relatives ruled the house with so many orders, and commanded us to do everything they wanted.
    For the next 1 week or so, we were running like headless chickens. Our mom stopped functioning altogether and taking care of her health & welbeing became another burden on us. We didn't even have time to process about dad's death back then. Everything happened so fast.

    Following Dad's 8th day rituals, everyone left us. The home became dreadfully silent. Then only we could feel the vacuum of losing our beloved dad.
    As you described in your OP, we too had so many thoughts crossing our minds about his life after death.

    Dad was so dear to all of us. We took care of him in a special way when he was alive.
    We used to be connected all the time, even though we didn't have FB and whatsapp those times. We called each other, and made sure he was fine whenever he left home. Even if that means a 30 mins shopping away from home, we would have called him at least once to make sure he was okay.

    Now that he's gone. Gone too far to an unknown place without even bidding goodbye in a proper way.
    It felt so uneasy without knowing where he was, how he was, and what he was doing..... The mind was restless looking for answers from every sources, but in vain.

    With this much pain in heart, we could not get back to normalcy back then. We would lay asleep in bed for hours in the morning without even doing our morning rituals. We wouldn't cook or eat, but speak about dad and this mystery together as family. If not, we would sit at each corners of the house in complete silence.

    Life went on and on like this for the next few weeks until a priest reminded us about dad's 31st day rituals.

    That particular night, I was awake and unable to concentrate my thoughts.
    I was trying to pray and speak my mind to God, but I could not. Eventually slept.
    As soon as I closed my eyes, I had a dream - a very beautiful dream which I will never forget.

    The dream:
    It was a huge garden....Full of green and fresh :)
    Compartmentalized as fruits, vegetables, paddy and tall trees & flowers sections. So many people ranging from kids and elders work there.
    There was a huge bangloaw in the center of that garden, where a few apparently new comers were waiting outside, perhaps seeking for jobs.
    I glanced through the new comers and found out my dad there. He was wearing one of his most favorite shorts, with some gardening tools in hand. I followed dad from a distance just to see what he was doing...

    He went inside the "Master's" room and within a few minutes he came out with a chubby little boy.
    The boy fondly hold my dad's hands and jumping with joy while taking him to the field. He then introduced dad to several others and they both worked together.

    I saw my dad was happy, energetic, and looked very young for his age. He apparently had bonded so well with that little boy and it felt so pleasing to see that my dad was happy with a companion at his present place.

    I woke up refreshed, and explained my dream to all at home.
    Unlike other times, they all sat infront of me, and listened to whatever I explained as if it was a live commentary from a real scenario.
    No one could see it as a mere dream.

    While listening to my dream, my mom interrupted and said that little boy must have been her elder son who died as a kid well before we were born. Dad was so fond of him and felt shattered after losing that child. However, mom and dad seldom spoke about their first born after that.

    According to mom, dad has a passion towards gardening and he dreamed to set up his home garden after retirement. But we never knew this side of our dad, as he was a very busy and successful businessman who would travel almost all his life.

    Whatsoever, we believed this dream as real. We convinced ourselves that God has decided to show a synopsis of what was dad's life after death to us, so that we could start living our lives without staying stagnated anymore.

    That was the last time we worried and cried for dad. Its been 13 years, and we always cherish and celebrate his life since then.
     
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  3. nakshatra1

    nakshatra1 Platinum IL'ite

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    You all are very brave to handle this, when he left at such a young age.

    I really hope and feel what you experienced is real. It's definitely God's way of showing that his soul is at peace.

    I am really grateful to you for sharing such a personal thing. It brings comfort to my heart.
     
  4. joylokhi

    joylokhi Platinum IL'ite

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    You have brought out exactly what I felt and feel to this day on the death of my parents. They passed away in their 80s only and due to old age normal wearing down . Even so, so many regrets that I couldnt be by their side when it actually happened due to my own occupation with my job/homework and managing children's activities etc. My parents always managed their affairs by themselves knowing that I was having a full time job and managing my family at outstation. So never had any expectations or demands for my time and help. However, i did my best by visiting them once in four to five months gap for a few days at a time. I think children with demands of their own family cannot be hundred satisfied with the attention they give their parents. If there is too much concentration on these, the immediate family will invariably suffer. It is not humanly possible to do justice to both. There may be a few who are lucky to have their parents and family all together and carrying on without any hassles. So, i think instead of getting depressed worrying about things beyond our control, as you say we can pray to God for welfare of all. Moreover, what ever happens is all ordained by God, and we are just playing our parts. Thats what i feel. Be cheerful and believe in a super power, that is God, above us leading things on.
     
  5. Rihana

    Rihana IL Hall of Fame

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    @nakshatra1 you have a way of putting so much in so few words. The above summarizes a lot of thoughts and also the beginnings of possible approaches to deal with it.

    I have found that time and regular meditation are the biggest healers for such losses.

    Starting a project or practice that would mean a lot to the one who is gone is one way to cope. It could be cooking their favorite dish every few days or maybe contributing to a cause they cared about. Sometimes, adopting a pet helps. The idea is to slowly let the happier memories rise higher and also add to those memories.

    Another way I used on really low days was guilt... I know it sounds odd. I "scolded" myself that if I am so immersed in sorrow I cannot be a good friend, mother, wife, colleague...

    The most effective strategy was for me to realize that if I am sad, the one who is gone will also be sad.

    Not knowing what happened to them after death -- this is a tough one. It was harder than I thought it would be. All my rational/atheist etc stuff went out the window when an aunt called up to kindly inform me that she had had a dream.. apparently we had not performed one ritual properly so the person came in her dream and yada yada yada..

    Generally speaking, the rituals help and being busy with life's other commitments helps. But, with the Covid stay-at-home restrictions and your other circumstances, you could perhaps use the help of a professional to see you through such phases.
     
    joylokhi, Hopikrishnan and jskls like this.
  6. 1Sandhya

    1Sandhya Platinum IL'ite

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    Sorry for your loss @nakshatra1
    An ancient text ‘Garuda Puranam’ was written to address all the questions you have raised and more. In normal times the pandit would’ve mentioned it to the male members of the bereaved esp. Hindu families. I personally don’t recommend you reading it though. It’s a bit graphic and borrows heavily from Spanish Inquisition style torture techniques to illustrate the plight of the souls whose families don’t perform the last rituals as prescribed to the last dot and tee. This above is my opinion only of course. I feel most bereaved families can do without the gratuitous guilt trips.
    I do recommend reading a page or two of some religious text, bhagvad gita or any other family favorite, for a few days. It can be comforting and reassuring.
     
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  7. jskls

    jskls IL Hall of Fame

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    Hugs to you OP. For some it takes a long time, to accept, come to terms with the reality. These rituals were established for a reason as a grieving process to slowly let it go. Offering any service in the name of the departed helps to an extent and doing things they loved to do is another one. Remembering all the beautiful memories one shares with the departed and talking about it with family in general conversation is another way of keeping them alive in our thoughts/actions. If one is religious there are many sacred texts that can be read to help calm the mind. But if there’s a deep quest within oneself on what happens next universe will present a way to deal with it. Can be a dream or a book or an incident. Take care
     
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  8. Hopikrishnan

    Hopikrishnan Silver IL'ite

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    I could not put it this nicely. I am always at a loss for what to say or do.
    "Having to live on without..." is the problem that has to be solved at two levels.
    At the task level, one has to adjust for the loss of the supports (physical, economic) and at a higher level one has to deal with the emotional and spiritual (belief system) supports that were lost.
    It is more difficult when a member of the household is lost, forever depriving the survivors of the household all those familiar interactions of the daily life. When someone dear who is a member of a different household passes away, the impact would have to be different. Applying guilt to snap out of ennui, and imagining that the one who had gone will also be sad would be natural for anyone who tends to mull over past events.

    Loss in the family is more difficult in this time of self-isolation due to pandemic.
     
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  9. nakshatra1

    nakshatra1 Platinum IL'ite

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    Thank you, I believe that
     
  10. nakshatra1

    nakshatra1 Platinum IL'ite

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    Yes, it is a most unfortunate time for whoever is experiencing such things. Corona is the saddest atmosphere for our generation- made everything so much more difficult .
     

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