10 things you realize when you have lost a loved one


Death of a loved one can never be easy. Each one goes through this process differently but whatever be the case, the pain is always there. Some hide it, some show it. Some cry when someone is around, some cry when they are alone. And if you have lost someone before you even understand what death is, then it a lot harder than you think. Losing a loved one brings pain, but sometimes the pain only grows. I was just 9 when I lost my Dad. He died of cancer.  I had seen him suffer for almost a year right in front of my eyes, but then I never thought he would be gone. I had never seen a death in the family before Dad passed away and for a while I couldn’t understand what it meant. I knew that Daddy was gone but I still couldn’t accept that I couldn’t see him again, that I couldn’t hug him when he came back from work, that he wouldn’t bring me any gifts and chocolates. It took time, a lot of time to understand and accept this. Writing this was long due, but I never brought myself to it until today. And I write this because it helps me! So here are few things that you realize when you have lost a loved one.
1. Death is certain
No matter how untimely the death, but someday or the other one has to die. Some die young, some die old. Some die peacefully, some suffer a painful death. But all of us have a definite end. The acceptance of this  fact will go a long way in helping you heal. As a child, death was more like an idea, something that you couldn’t point out and say this is death. The fairy tales always told me happily ever after, it was the villains who were eliminated. But my Daddy was my hero, how could he then die? It was only after growing up a little, that I realized the reality of death.
2.There are times you will question why
Why did this happen to me? Why did he/she have to leave me? Why he/she? What went wrong? These questions will keep eating you up. I kept asking myself why did Daddy have to leave me? Was I bad girl? Was I good enough daughter? I was constantly thinking about this. The questions will always continue!
3. It is okay to cry
Crying is not a sign of weakness. It always to let those tears flow. I did cry for a few days immediately after Dad’s death, but after that I didn’t want to cry when anyone was around. I had to be strong girl. But what I did not realize then was that crying would not make me weak in any way. Holding back those tears would wreck me emotionally.
4.The best way to ease your pain is to talk about it
Coping with pain alone is difficult. The best think that you can do is to talk to someone about it. Not talking about something does not make it not real. If not you, someone else will talk about it sometime or the other and then it definitely will hurt you more. So talk about how you feel, what hurts you the most. Find someone you can trust and just pour your heart out. After Dad’s death, I didn’t speak to anyone about it. I wouldn’t speak to mom because I thought reminding her of Dad would hurt her. I wouldn’t speak to my friends because I wasn’t sure that they would understand. I didn’t talk to my teachers because I wanted to be that strong and intelligent girl, not someone who would go to them and tell her list of problems. But that didn’t help me in anyway. I used to get upset for no reason, I used to get angry for no reason, all because I thought no one understood how I felt.
5.There will be days, bad days
The pain of losing a loved one is not something that will go away in a couple of days. There will be bad days that follow. It is okay to be vulnerable. But what is not okay, is to give up!
6. Time indeed is a healer
Pain doesn’t vanish within a day or two. Give it some time. Time will heal the wound slowly. How fast it heals all depends on you. Time may not heal the scars. The scars still remain. And sometimes when you look at those scars, the pain comes back. It does not need a reason. It just happens. There are so many times when I have been doing something random and suddenly the thought of Dad crosses my mind. It hurts. Even after 14 long years, it still hurts.
7.Doing what you love helps
May be listening or playing music your way of calming your nerves? Or do you like playing a sport? Do what you love to do. It may not take away the pain completely but it helps you deal with it. I used to read, read and read. And gradually I started writing. And I was hooked to writing and that is how I slowly began the blog.
8.Slowly, you will be happy
Gradually you will accept the reality and slowly you will begin to live your life to the fullest. Remember, your loved ones would never want to see you sad. As life goes on, you will find various reasons to be happy and that is good.
9.And on your big days, you wish they were with you
Be it on the day you get your first job, when you graduate, when you are getting married, when you get that big promotion, you wish they were here by your side. And that is perfectly normal. But all you need to tell yourself is that they are happy and proud of you no matter where they are. I missed Dad badly during my graduation. I just wished he could see his little girl becoming an engineer!
10.You will remember all the memories you made and you learn to value the people in your life
All those happy memories, all those fun filled times will all keep coming back to you. You will cherish these memories. And you will try living in the moment and enjoy every moment that you get with the people who matter to you. Because no one lives forever, except in memories.
This post is very close to my heart. I hope it helps others too!
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72 responses to “10 things you realize when you have lost a loved one”

  1. It’s not easy to lose your Dad at the age of 9. It must be very tough. I lost Dad when I was in Mumbai and had to rush home when he was in coma. I was able to see him before he died. I lost my elder cousin this year and it was so tough. Went in a lean phase for a month or two. It happened when I lost another cousin and a friend who drowned in Pune. I couldn’t accept this fact and was angry.
    One of my uncle just came out of the coma and met him yesterday at the hospital. When I came out, I was shocked and went into a state of sadness. I hope he survives but difficult to say anything. That’s life, I guess. He is a good man.

    • Reema D'souza says:

      Yes life at times is really difficult to deal with especially when it is about the death of the people whom we care about! Hope your uncle survives.

  2. sneha says:

    Beautifully written Reema. I lost my mom five years back… A week later my grandfather a month later a very close friend all jn the same year..and then again last month my best friend. Life is so uncertain. And you are right the more you talk about it …it helps!!! And so does crying. Losing someone this way is something that can never be replaced by another person all we can do is heal with time and accept their presence in our hearts than as physical entity.
    Am sure they are all up there living peacefully. We are strong kids

  3. Ramya Rao says:

    This is such a touching and heartfelt post,Reema. I have seen you recently but very well understand what yu have been through. Time is the best healer. Isn’t it?

  4. Shailaja V says:

    A very heartfelt post, Reema. I am so sorry for your loss and it’s true, the pain doesn’t completely go away but talking, time and doing things that make you happy all help. Big hugs. This couldn’t have been easy to write.

  5. Lata Sunil says:

    Ramya, that’s a great post. My grandmother is in her death bed and I can hardly think of her death. But this post will help me prepare.

  6. For someone who has lost a closest person a year back this is as sensitive an issue as it can be . Through your writing I almost travelled and revisited all my memories and the pain obviously. Let peace and happiness prevail

  7. Stephen says:

    I completely understand your feelings. And I know what it goes through …It haunts us every day… the memories that we spend together with them and those points..I agree with all of them.

    Power to You. Hugs!

  8. The most important thing is, you have helped others relieve their pain, when you are on the path to relieving the pain of your loss too. Hugs and love, Reema. Stay strong, and keep motivating your readers through your positive posts! 🙂

  9. Rajlakshmi says:

    I don’t know what to say… I am touched beyond words… writing this post must have been very difficult but I loved how strong you have been and wrote this about your learnings. Love and hugs.

  10. Coping with the loss of a close friend or family member may be one of the hardest challenges that many of us face. When we lose a spouse, sibling or parent our grief can be particularly intense. Loss is understood as a natural part of life, but we can still be overcome by shock and confusion, leading to prolonged periods of sadness or depression. The sadness typically diminishes in intensity as time passes, but grieving is an important process in order to overcome these feelings and continue to embrace the time you had with your loved one. If your relationship with the deceased was difficult, this will also add another dimension to the grieving process. It may take some time and thought before you are able to look back on the relationship and adjust to the loss.

  11. Time is a healer.But there’s always a scar.Living with the scar gracefully is the challenge.
    That’s why it’s important to make beautiful memories.

  12. Atulmaharaj says:

    Very Sorry for your loss Reema, It takes courage and a lot of will power to move on. Hat’s off to you for that.

  13. Ruchie says:

    It brings me in tears 🙁 Miss my dad every moment !!

  14. Deepa says:

    Can relate with each and every point of this post as I lost both my parents few years back and there is not even a single day that I don’t miss them..Parents are irreplaceable and a void always remain. Good that you wrote about it.. it helps to share what you are feeling inside. You will find my parents in many of my posts..sharing one with you- http://kreativemommy.com/confessions-of-a-daughter-and-an-open-apology-to-everybody-else/

  15. Ranjini says:

    Crying is not a sign of weakness. I agree. And it does take a lot of time to get over people. Sometimes we can’t. But life has to go on. I see my grandmother still talk about her parents and sibling and my heart goes out to her. She reminisces her childhood and ends up crying missing all of them. Some losses… Nice post Reema 🙂

  16. dew cool says:

    heart touching.. bring tears to my eyes , No doubt life doesn’t stop if we lost our loved ones .. it must move on with more courage & maturity 🙂

  17. Jaibala Rao says:

    As I read this post, I miss my Grandmother. She is there with me every single second, every moment. Life moves on but memories they are always a part of us. We always miss the ones we have lost, even when we live our lives, laugh or cry they are always a part of whatever we do. Always.

  18. Geets says:

    It sure is a heartfelt post-Reema and my heart goes with you. I was 10 when I lost my grandfather and that was when I realised what was death. Not on his D-Day, but days after when he was not around, when I couldn’t find him in the house when I realised no more bedtime stories, no more toy shopping and nothing more from him, that was when the realisation struck!

    I’m really sorry for your loss and the pain sure doesn’t go away in a day or two, but takes time to heal!

    More power to you Reema!

  19. Kala Ravi says:

    Reema I know what a tough time you and your family have been through with your Dad’s loss at such an early age. A loss of a dear one can never be adequately consoled or replaced. Loved the points you have made, from the heart. Indeed having people to share your grief, helps to soothe the ache and time indeed is a big healer. I think you have been rather mature and wise all through and a big strength to your family. Stay blessed.

  20. Manisha Garg says:

    made me cry…Happy to connect #zarahatkeblogreads

  21. Modern Gypsy says:

    Beautifully written. It’s not easy to lose your father at 9. And it’s never easy to lose a loved one. (((hugs)))

  22. That’s a heart touching post, Reema! Last year only I lost my grand father. Had he been alive today i.e. 12.09.2016, he would have celebrated his 93rd birthday. Thanks for sharing this post with us, Reema! More power to u!


  23. shweta says:

    I lost my sister at a very young age and all what you said is so true…my heart raced with the post.

  24. Its is very tough to lose a loved one, and when it is your dad, the very foundation of the family is lost. I lost my dad when I was doing my PG, we were totally perplexed, dint know what to do. It took a long time to understand that we were alone and we needed to do something to stabilize ourselves emotionally. Menaka Bharaathi just posted http://simpleindianmom.in/natural-ways-overcome-nausea-first-trimester/

  25. Such a great post from you Reema! Made me so emotional.

  26. Omkar Jadhav says:

    Beautifully written Reema! I am sure it must have been heavy to write this down, as I felt heavy myself as I was reading through each point, until towards the end when the memory of my grandfather, who meant everything in my childhood, came to the surface and the thought of him not being there when I get married, which was one of his wishes, shook me from within.

    Thanks for this heartful reflection.

  27. Tina Basu says:

    Sorry to hear about your loss Reema. In 2015-2016 I have lost 4 people very dear to me. It feels worst!

  28. Abhinav Kumar says:

    First, hats-off to you for being so strong to write this post. Sorry for your loss but I’m sure Uncle is here showering his blessings on you and happy and proud to see you growing and doing better and better each passing day. Lot of ands.(Face-palm) Yes, I agree its not easy to lose someone and specially one from your immediate family. I’m always scared of losing my parents, they are the ones I always look upto when I face any problem in my life and I cannot trust anyone else apart from them. One thing is there I have realized that life ends in different ways in fact as per the deeds you have done. I have seen bad endings, and good endings too. It hurts when you see people suffering so badly and wish for death. But you are helpless in such situations. That is why I try to be good and do good so that at the end, I leave with a smile on my face. Take care and keep writing Reema. 🙂
    I was waiting for your blog’s turn though. I smiled and said, “Finally, the wait is over.”

    • Reema D'souza says:

      Thank you Abhinav for all your kind words. Yes, wish we could all leave with a smile, of having a sense of achievement for having made a difference in someones life.
      I am glad to know that you were waiting for my blog’s turn! 🙂

  29. anand says:

    Sorry to hear about it. It was a heart touching post. It sure would have been very difficult. Stay Strong.

  30. Such a heartfelt post. No words to say, except that I loved it.

  31. Sumit says:

    Oh Wow!

    What an emotional post! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  32. I could relate to each word in your beautifully penned post dear Reema, keep p the good work..Your points are genuinely worth taking as I have lost my mom some years back and it was these things that helped.

  33. I am sure Dad is watching and is super proud

  34. Aseem says:

    That’s a really poignant post Reema. Can totally understand what you must have gone through while writing this post. And kudos to you for bringing out positivity to help others who feel this away after losing a loved one.

  35. Morgan says:

    This helped me out more than words could express. My dad just died extremely suddenly from a heart attack at only 47 years old. My family is having such a hard time coping but I’m going to share this with them and hope it helps them like it helps me. Thank you for posting this.

  36. Mandeep says:

    I lost my brother when i was 17..It was the hardest time of my life..But time heals everything….I miss him everyday…..

  37. This is a very touching post! I’m sure it will help a lot of people. Time indeed is the best healer. Thanks for sharing. 🙂

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