Five Stages of Grief, Kubler-Ross Model

Last night I slept like a baby.  I think all the anxiety was released and I was able to rest for once.  I woke up with no headache with a little achiness.  I was at peace for the first time in a long time.  My body felt like it just got quiet.  Do you hear that?  Me neither.  Breathe a sigh of relief.  And smile=)

I think I just completed the five stages of grief, also known as the Kübler-Ross model, was first introduced by Elisabeth Kübler-Ross in her 1969 book, On Death and Dying.

Denial – “I feel fine.”; “This can’t be happening, not to me.”

Denial is usually only a temporary defense for the individual. This feeling is generally replaced with heightened awareness of situations and individuals that will be left behind after death.

Anger – “Why me? It’s not fair!”; “How can this happen to me?”; “Who is to blame?”

Once in the second stage, the individual recognizes that denial cannot continue. Because of anger, the person is very difficult to care for due to misplaced feelings of rage and envy. Any individual that symbolizes life or energy is subject to projected resentment and jealousy.

Bargaining – “Just let me live to see my children graduate.”; “I’ll do anything for a few more years.”; “I will give my life savings if…”

The third stage involves the hope that the individual can somehow postpone or delay death. Usually, the negotiation for an extended life is made with a higher power in exchange for a reformed lifestyle. Psychologically, the individual is saying, “I understand I will die, but if I could just have more time…”

Depression – “I’m so sad, why bother with anything?”; “I’m going to die… What’s the point?”; “I miss my loved one, why go on?”

During the fourth stage, the dying person begins to understand the certainty of death. Because of this, the individual may become silent, refuse visitors and spend much of the time crying and grieving. This process allows the dying person to disconnect oneself from things of love and affection. It is not recommended to attempt to cheer up an individual who is in this stage. It is an important time for grieving that must be processed.

Acceptance – “It’s going to be okay.”; “I can’t fight it, I may as well prepare for it.”

In this last stage, the individual begins to come to terms with their mortality or that of their loved one.

Though in my case, I’ve accepted and I have found the will to FIGHT IT to the best of my ability as in the sense of not giving up.  I’m not dying but I have faced my mortality.  No one lives forever and the lesson I have learned is that the time we have here on this Earth is marked and that we should live it accordingly.  I want to laugh more, eat everything, experience all, and surround myself with the beauty of life.

So, I started with my family and invited them over for a home-cooked meal.  I wanted to spend some good quality time with them.  Talk, eat, laugh.  Everything was going well until the aroma of the cooking salmon made me want to vomit.

Baby steps, right?

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