After my mum first passed away, for a very long time I had this sense of being lost. The best way for me to describe it is as this; I am an 8 year-old girl that has lost her mother in the shopping centre and no matter which way I turn, I can never seem to find her.
In the beginning it was like I would walk five steps then turn right, then turn left, then walk 5 steps back the way I came from but no matter which way I walked I couldn’t seem to find what I was looking for and that “lost” feeling never went away.
That feeling stayed with me for a every long time. I soon worked out that losing your mum is like losing a part of yourself that you are constantly trying to find.
And now that my dad has passed away that feeling is back again. Only this time, I don’t feel like a little girl that has lost her mum anymore, I feel more like a jumbo A380 plane without a rudder and have no sense of direction now that both parents are not here.
Other people I know have felt the same thing and have described this feeling in a similar way and others have likened the feeling to ‘being a headless chicken’, ‘walking through life blindfolded’ or ‘being lost out at sea’.
Whatever way you describe it, the feeling is still the same, it’s losing the one part of yourself that helps you navigate through life.
You have lost a big part of who you once were.
So your new life is not about finding the missing piece (because it will always be missing) but putting yourself back together as best you can.
Here are some tips that are helping me (and have helped me) to move forward on this new journey.
Know that this feeling is normal!
You are not alone in feeling like this – allow yourself to feel it, embrace it and accept what it is. You will eventually start to feel like you are gaining your sense of direction and self in time.
Allow yourself to feel all your emotions
This emotion, this feeling of being lost is just that a feeling. And like all feelings and emotions it is important to honour them and then let them go. Trying to fight the emotion or surpress it wont help you on your grief journey.
Talk to your family, friends or a counsellor about your loss. Talk about your feelings – regrets, anger, sadness, happiness any type of emotion that you feel talk about it. Talk about this sense of feeling lost and what it might mean to the people around you.
Find yourself by finding your sense of purpose.
Unfortunately the death of a parent (or any one for that matter) reminds us that life is finite and death is unavoidable. While it is important to work through your grief, it is also important to find your sense of purpose again whatever that may be.
This feeling may be with you for a while as you start to navigate through your new life now. Just know, the feeling will eventually pass.
If there is anything that resonated with you, or you would just like to say hi, please feel free to leave me a comment below.