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  • Katie Aspin

Dealing with Grief

For the last month, I have been dealing with grief and I wish I had an idea of when it was going to get better.

On December 15th, my grandma passed away from kidney failure after a battle with blood cancer. It wasn't necessarily unexpected but I would be lying if I said I was doing okay because I'm just....not. While I was fortunate to have some time off to travel back home to Michigan a couple weeks before it happened, I have learned over the years that no amount of time will ever be enough.

Aside from my mom, my grandparents have been everything to me. Because I didn't have a relationship with my father growing up (and his parents were gone before I was born), my maternal grandparents helped raise me. They taught me the value of hard work and being independent, took care of me when I was younger so my mom could work to feed us and put a roof over our head, taught me how to play a mean game of Hand-and-Foot and were part of my support system when I went through the hardest time of my life.

Growing up, I used to think that grandparents were invincible and that they would live forever, even though I know deep down, that's not possible. I don't take it lightly that I had 27 years with my grandpa and 36 years with my grandma as I know some people don't ever know their grandparents but this past month has just honestly been gut wrenching. I find myself wanting to call her so I can hear her voice and tell me about her day, even if it wasn't that exciting.

I've researched the five steps of grief, received items in the mail about it and I just don't know how one moves through the process. I (luckily) haven't had to deal with too many losses in my life but goodness, it hurts. How long does it take for each stage? I realize no one can probably answer that but I feel like asking it anyway.

Going to work has been both dreadful and a welcome distraction. When my grandpa passed away in 2014, I was offered a new job pretty soon after and found myself moving from Michigan to Georgia. Needless to say, I had a lot going on to keep my brain occupied. This time around, I'm finding myself having to sit with my feelings and that's not something I'm particularly good at if I'm being honest.

If anyone has any tips, I'm all ears.

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