How the backpack metaphor can help you navigate grief

I want to explain my backpack logo, which is essential to understanding the healing process of grief. Grieving is a process, a journey, a long road in which you encounter many different facets or emotional terrains along the way. These emotional terrains may include, for example, a dark forest in which all feels unfamiliar and surreal, or a cactus patch where you feel on edge and irritable. The road is definitely not a straight path. Instead, grievers go through twists and turns, hairpin curves that leave you reeling, and sometimes areas of terrain that are surprisingly peaceful.

Look at the backpack, which represents the journey and the tools that will aid you on the way. Now, notice the loops upward. Although one usually wants a straight line upward to get out of the pain of grief, the loops represent the reality. One makes progress upward, then the loop goes downward.

Please see info-graphic below which a dear client made for me, based on this concept.

These loops could be in the course of an hour (if it is a recent death) or in the course of a day or week, etc.  It is essential to keep in mind that the loop does go upward again, in time. Grief changes from one hour to the next, from one day to the next. Although it may feel you are making no progress, in fact, you are slowly going upward. It may feel that you are thrown back at Day 1 or Rock Bottom, but this is not the case. Feelings are not always the truth. Feelings change and pass. Try to allow the feelings to pass and trust the healing process.

Posted on June 14, 2017 .