The Five Stages of Grief

DENIAL

It was the first few minutes of finding out that you had passed. I was on my way to be buy a de-breather mask that was needed for you. The ward you were admitted in didn’t have it in their stock. I was angry at them for not having something as essential as a de-breather mask. How many patients had to die because of this failure?

While I was hurrying to the pharmacy, my cousin, who was with you, called to tell me that the mask was not needed.  I ran up the stairs to the 5th floor where you were with a lot of fear, yes, but a cautious hope that the mask was not needed because you had somehow made a miraculous recovery and that you were breathing fine. I knew, but I didn’t want to believe it. Couldn’t fathom it. Couldn’t internalize it. I walked into the room to find my cousin crying and something inside me broke. But I still held on to the stubborn hope that you would be fine, somehow. Come back to life, somehow. I mean miracles like that have happened before, right?

ANGER

It was the moment I saw your body encased in the white casket. The anger surged within me. I was so angry. Angry at the world, angry at the cancer, angry at the doctor who had told us that yours was a cancer that could be healed. “90% of the people with this cancer get better, don’t worry…”. And we didn’t worry, we had hope but that hope was for naught. You left. You went. You died. I was so angry. Angry at a life taken so young. Angry at God for allowing this to happen. Angry at the doctor who was on duty and didn’t fight for you. Angry at you for not fighting hard enough to stay. But most of all I was angry at myself. I felt I was to blame for what had happened to you.

BARGAINING

It was the thought that all that was happening was a bad dream. I pinched myself multiple times, trying to get myself to wake up. Convinced myself that any minute I was going to wake up. A world where my baby sister didn’t exist was not a world I wanted to exist in. I started to apologize for all the wrong I had done. The wrong that could have led to your demise. I asked myself a lot of ‘what-ifs’. What if I had insisted that you stand up more? What if I had looked after you better? What if I hadn’t been so concerned with work? We needed the money, but we needed you more. What if I had done this? What if I had done that?

DEPRESSION

It was the knowledge that you were gone. It was seeing the casket being lowered in to the ground. The knowledge that sank in that you really were gone and you weren’t coming back. It was the fear of forgetting you. Your cute little laugh, the way you would randomly dance. The way you would swipe things from my room and not look the least bit guilty for doing it. Your smile that you gave freely even when you were in pain and weak. I felt sick. I didn’t have the strength to get up in the morning. I cried all the time. Tried to show people I was strong because many of them expected me to get over it, and be my usual sunny self. I wasn’t able to write. I couldn’t sleep. The dreams that plagued me were too many. I sank into the lowest of lows and only counseling could bring me out of it.

ACCEPTANCE

It was the knowledge you were not on this side of the veil. It was the love of Christ. It was my church family that held me up. It was the friends that continually checked on me. It was the memory of the rain that fell at the moment the casket was lowered into the grave. Rain that fell from clouds that were clear all day. It was the rainbow that appeared soon after the rain. Letting me know that you are okay on the other side of the veil. It was the counselling. It was the knowledge that although I miss you like hell, I would get to see you after my time on earth was through. It was the patient love of my family. It was you – the knowledge that you were not in pain anymore. It was me finally accepting.

Grief is not something easy to go through, I have experienced my fair share of death, but losing my 22 year old sister to cancer was one that broke me. I am at the acceptance stage now, better than I was a few months ago. If you are going through this and need a sympathetic ear, don’t hesitate to contact me on mableamuron@gmail.com. You are not alone.

18 Comments

  1. Woow…. Very inspiring.Mable u are such an encouragement and inspiring creature. While I was reading this article I really felt that if it’s not God who else can enable you to go through all these stages after the loss of our beloved sister?. I can’t stop tears from my eyes.lastly I pray God to continue using you. Your story is exceptional.
    God bless you. Love u Dea sister.Blessings!

  2. Wow…. words can’t even come close to comforting you.
    Thank you for sharing your heart with us. I’m glad you found the courage to let others know what you are going through and people out there needing it now that they are not alone.
    Stay strong and hold on to your faith. God bless you.

  3. I really understand everything ,you went thru coz I was once in that same situation , last year, which started by the death of my only grandpa, then my boyfriend, then my big brother,
    My world shattered ,
    But you know what it was only the love and the relationship with Christ Jesus that comforted me in the word.
    That made me even more stronger and got over it.

  4. Crying now again…but yeah..she was the sister I never had so cute and kind and yes I miss her laugh so much, I never imagined her gone so soon. I actually imagined her being an air hostess like she dreamed.. posting photos from her different destinations, my heart broke because i didn’t get to see that. I miss her but she’s in a much better place with out this Rona any way…she is protected.

  5. And you are one of the strongest people I know…you handled that with so much grace and kindness i didn’t know you had.

  6. I hadn’t really recognised that anger is part of grieving… I always have it but now makes sense. Thanks for sharing and I hope you continue to find healing in all of this – and may your sister’s soul rest in eternal peace.

  7. You have inspired me little sis. The flower withers but the seed remains. She is out of the body but we cling onto the hope that one sweet day, we shall see her again. She fought the good fight. Proud of you Mable.

  8. My goodness!Sending lots of love and hugs to you Marble. I am glad that you have made the steps. Wishing you more courage and strength on your journey to recovery. And thank you…for sharing this. ❤️❤️❤️

  9. Wow I bless the Lord so much that you are now at the stage of acceptance, the truth is she is very okay and enjoying herself with the Lord and assuredly you are going to meet her one day and it will be such a great moment

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