I lost both of my parents. It’s something I’m still coming to terms with, and there’s so much that’s still unsettled. Because there’s something that nobody tells you about loss. When you lose your parents, it feels like you lose your childhood.
It’s almost overwhelming to realize that I don’t really have a big reason to visit my hometown anymore. What was once all I knew is now on the track toward becoming a distant memory. If I want to visit my parents at their gravesite, I’m going to have to book a hotel room.
My dad, who died suddenly yet peacefully in July of 2020, was prepped for this moment. I think he started preparing the second after my mom died roughly 17 years ago, if not sooner. He and I used to have long conversations on the front porch of his house, which also used to be my home. With confidence, he looked me in the eye and said, “I’m ready for this.” He’d lived a good life, had two daughters he was proud of, and had his one love whom he very truly missed. He never tried to move on after my mom died. In his eyes, nobody could ever compare.
Losing your parents comes in many forms. Maybe it’s something you’ve been prepared for. Or maybe you haven’t talked to them in years and feel regretful over the things you never got to say. Other times, the loss completely comes out of the blue. Your parents might not even have a particular diagnosis before dying. Like all deaths, it will take a long time to process. While it’s been only a few months, I still can’t wrap my head around the fact that he’s no longer here. In all honesty, I expect that feeling to linger for several more months.
But as I’ve experienced parental loss before, it’s slightly different this time around. Here are other suggestions that will help your grieving process.
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