Four Questions to Ask When Feeling Down - Part 2

June 5, 2015, 12:00 am


Am I Really Experiencing Grief?

We often think of grief as something we experience after the death of someone we love. In reality, grief can be connected to any significant loss we encounter. This may include the loss of a relationship, a friendship, our health, or even a job. We often fail to realize how much of an impact loss has on us.

Several years ago, I injured myself while working out. For over a year I was unable to participate in many of my favorite activities. The simplest act of opening a door was difficult and I was in constant pain. The whole ordeal left me feeling useless. A few months after my injury, I had to admit that I was feeling depressed.

My situation is quite common. I have spoken with a number of people who have had similar experiences.  A friend of mine had knee surgery two years ago. During his recovery, he went through a few weeks of feeling very discouraged. When he shared his feelings with his wife, she asked him if perhaps he was feeling depressed. His immediate reaction was to deny any depression and, as is often the case, the perceived stigma of having a mental problem or weakness. As he thought about it, however, he had to admit that he was indeed depressed about having to sit in a chair for most of the day. The physical loss he was experiencing began to get him down emotionally. This realization led him to get some much needed help.

Have you experienced a significant loss in your life that you are struggling with? Could it be possible that you are experiencing some depression over the loss?  Adjustment Disorder Depression, as this is called, signals that you are struggling to adjust to recent changes in your life.  Some changes are easier to adjust to than others. Often moving to a new place can be a difficult. We find ourselves missing the people and places we left behind. Losing a job or retiring can be tough. We miss the order of the old work routine, our identity within the company or the daily contact with the people we worked with. We may find it more difficult than we would have ever thought to adjust to a new routine. Parents, becoming “empty nesters” as kids leave the house, can find the change difficult. Coping with loved ones venturing into the service can be very difficult. When my youngest son went into the military a few years ago, it took a toll on me.

If you are struggling to adjust to a loss in your life, call me. I will do my best to help you. Remember that God understands what you are going through and His help is only a prayer away. The first step is admitting you need some help.

Talk to you next week.

Tom 

Posted by The Chaplain's Corner at 12:00 am
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