What Grief Is, Isn’t, Does and Doesn’t Do

By: Deb Kosmer
Monday, November 9, 2015

Deb Kosmer uses her gift with words in this lovely poem that so adequately explains what grief does and doesn't do as well as explaining what it is and what it isn't. In a way that only Deb can, she provides you with her gift of hope for the futurel

by Deb Kosmer

It doesn’t wait for an invitation.

It doesn’t go away because you want it to.

It always overstays its welcome.

It isn’t logical or easily explained.

It doesn’t respond to threats or bribes.

It will not be avoided indefinitely. It will find a way to be noticed.

It is not linear, horizontal, or vertical.

It is not predictable.

It is not confined by time or space.

Grief doesn’t play favorites.

Grief isn’t just for women and sissies.

Grief doesn’t forget. It has an excellent memory.

Grief cannot be gone around; only through.

Grief is never really “finished” or “over.” Rather it takes breaks which give us, “breaks from it.”

Grief is not a single lesson to be learned, but rather a series of lessons.

The “outbursts and outpourings of grief” seldom happen at convenient times.

Grief does not apologize.

Grief knocks on everyone’s door eventually.

Grief is not the plague and it is not contagious; though it may seem that way when others repeatedly avoid you.

Grief can find you even when you are asleep or dreaming.

Grief will not leave you alone because you swear at it; although you might feel better for awhile if you do.

You can no more reason your way out of grief than you can a paper bag.

Grief will not be toyed with. It insists on being taken seriously.

Grief wants to completely take over your life. You can’t allow that. Or you will become its victim.

Grief respects those who honestly acknowledge its existence and who work with it rather than against it.

For them grief allows itself to be reshaped into creative energy and makes room for hope to coexist along side of it.

Deb Kosmer; MSW
Bereavement Support Coordinator
Affinity Visiting Nurses Hospice
Neenah WI 54956


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