Blog kindly written by Lucille Rosetti – The Bereaved. Sharing tools to help people through the grief process.
It’s hard to put the pain experienced from the death of a loved one into words. Such a deep loss affects us physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. Dealing with death is a constantly evolving process that looks and feels different for everyone. There’s no timeline for healing, and there’s no way to quantify when you should begin to feel better. But for some people, making a move can be the perfect way to refresh their souls and add happiness back to their life. If you think this may apply to you, here are some things you need to keep in mind.
Process Your Grief Before Making Major Plans
While there’s no magic solution to take away your pain, certain grieving steps may at least ease it. Give yourself permission to be vulnerable; if that means showing your emotions visibly, do so without apology or excuses. Don’t close yourself off, which only makes you feel more alone. Reach out to and connect with friends and family — and allow them to be there for you. Take the time you need to heal. Do what you can to heal and then begin to think of how moving fits into that overall process. Just try to delay making major decisions right after your loved one’s passing, so those decisions aren’t based solely on emotion.
Moving Doesn’t Mean Forgetting the Past
Some people find themselves stuck in an endless loop of grief when they are surrounded by so many memories. Seeking a change of scenery provides a concrete reminder that life is worth living and the world is worth exploring. If after some time and thought, you decide that you need that fresh start and need to get away from those memories, know that you are not betraying your loved one or being selfish. Moving doesn’t have to mean forgetting your loved one; it just means you are brave.
Some Steps Will Be Easier for You
Making the decision to move after losing a loved one can be hard. But once you’ve made that choice, it’s time to start checking other “to-do’s” off your list. First, track the real estate market so you’re better able to find the most optimal time, if applicable, to sell your home and not lose any equity. Then, find a realtor you trust so you can start your home search. Ask friends and family for recommendations and then use these questions as you meet with potential realtors to find the perfect fit for you. Research neighbourhoods, cities, and communities in which you’d like to live. Before purchasing a home, make sure you have it thoroughly inspected.
If you are renting, you’ll also want to do your research into neighbourhoods, school zones, and amenities. Also ask about how much rent is expected to rise after your initial term. Some properties may leave that open, while others address rate hikes in your contract.
Other Steps Will Be Much Harder
When you’re moving after the death of a loved one, the easiest part is finding the right place to call home. Once that’s over, it’s time to pack and prepare, which also means sorting through your loved one’s possessions. This process can be filled with emotions, so ask someone to help you, and know that it’s okay to not know what to keep, what to donate, and what to toss. And as HomeAdvisor reminds, when you’re packing, it’s also okay to take breaks for self-care, as opposed to doing it all in one long marathon session.
You may want to keep a few of your loved one’s things to use or display in your new place, but do so in a way that does not add clutter or stress to your life. That crazy mug they just had to have? Use it to store your pens. You can even get creative and turn clothing into quilts, stuffed animals, holiday ornaments, pillows, or “new” clothing items like gloves or scarves.
Grief is such a complicated journey, but if moving to a new location will make things easier, you should definitely consider it. While that pain may never be gone, a new beginning can at least make that pain a little easier to bear. Just remember to take it one day at a time.
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