Ellen's book will strengthen and guide you in your role as caregiver to an elder parent or relative, and help you understand your own physical, emotional, mental & spiritual needs.
Surrendering Our Relationships
When someone who is dear to us passes away, our relationship with them doesn’t end, it transforms into a new form. We must come to terms with that; that’s the process of grieving. I believe that, as their body, mind and spirit changes into a different form, so does the relationship we have with them. We must surrender the connection that was in order to form a new bond.
We can’t predict how we will feel when the anniversary arrives. It’s just a day after all, we think, but it’s a special one. As the first anniversary of my mothers leaving drew closer over the past couple of weeks, I began to recapture some of the feelings and memories of that time. The first year is the most important, my friend Lee tells me, because we re-experience with our senses the sights, smells and sounds of that time, along with the feelings. It’s important to take some time to talk about the relationship we had with that person, the qualities we remember about them.
The loss of our mother, particularly of the mother-daughter bond, can be a primal experience. It’s about safety in the world. In my case, the feelings I’ve experienced anew have caused my physical body to go out of alignment; my low back tightened, my right neck and shoulder spasmed and hurt. My body was speaking to me loud and clear.
This morning, the actual anniversary of the day Mom passed on in the early morning, the atmosphere in my room felt exactly the same as it did one year ago. During meditation an awareness came to me; our revisiting, on this first anniversary, of the feelings and sensations that took place at the time of death is due, at least in part, to the presence of our loved one around us in a much closer way on this day. Their spirit is with us.
Not everyone would choose to think along these lines, but for those of you who do, I hope this comforts you.
Ellen Besso, Martha Beck certified life coach and trained counsellor, is committed to helping midlife women enrich their lives. She is the mother of an adult daughter and was caregiver for her elderly mother and a close friend who recently passed away. Ellen’s personal goal is to live and work in a spiritual, heart centred way. She is the author of Surviving Eldercare & has numerous articles published on midlife and eldercare.