If you're here, perhaps it's because you, too, lost someone very close to you. I felt so alone after my mom died. It's been seven months now, and I realized that it is pretty normal to google the same things after your mom dies. I never found much satisfaction in the answers I found, though. I've been reviewing and reflecting on my grief journey and thought I'd take a few minutes to answer my early questions.
Things I Googled when my mom died:
- does my dog know I’m grieving
- my mom passed away
- adult mom passed away
- grief fog
- how long does grief fog last
- Apps to message no one
Now, just less than seven months past my mom's passing, let me answer my questions:
Does my dog know I'm grieving?
Who knows why this was so important to me 🤷🏾♀️. Some folks will sit very strongly in camp, “Yes!” and others will firmly sit in camp, “No!”. What ultimately mattered is that when I needed cuddles of the furry variety, my pets were there for me. I think my pets can tell when I'm sad, and they (read: Mander) nuzzle up and make me feel like I'm not alone. That's what matters.
What is grief fog?
This is not a scientific explanation of grief fog; it's been several months since I've read about it myself. This is how I would have answered this question knowing what I know now: “Noops, ‘grief fog' is a biological state of being where the brain is recovering from emotional trauma, a dramatic shift in reality: the loss of something meaningful. Similar to depression, but altogether different, the world feels heavy, hazy, time moves differently, and your brain may be actively resisting the loss you are experiencing. It's thick. I re-read what I wrote in those months, and I struggle to fully connect with the depth of that anguish and sorrow, the shock of the loss. All I can say is that you need to give yourself time and space to let your body heal from the emotional trauma of loss – and that can take months. So do it slowly, give yourself space, and know that you will find ways to continue your relationship with your loved one, even though she's not here anymore.”
How long does grief fog last?
Most of my research 💻 indicated that “typical” grief fog could last 2-3 months. However, there are situations, especially if the loss was of someone close to you (a partner, parent, immediate family member, etc.), where grief fog can last six months to 1 year or longer. If it lasts longer – and we're talking about debilitating grief fog – then we start to talk about complicated grief, which is altogether different.
Apps to message no one
It's not uncommon to seek a way to communicate/connect with one's loved one once they've passed. When she was still here, I spoke to my mom on the phone every week or two and saw her every month. But I texted her every few days and sent her pictures of my life or things that I thought were funny. In the months following her death, I wrote her a lot: letters, journal entries, speeches, but I wanted a way to text her without texting her phone – my dad was monitoring it now. Ultimately, I settled by creating a private discord server and a channel called “mommas-channel”. I messaged her almost daily for the first two months. They went unanswered, but I know she read them.
Adult Mom Passed Away
This wasn't a question quite as much as it was searching for others who might share my experience. I was surprised to find there did not seem to be too many that popped up on the first few pages of a google search. It's hard to describe how isolating that is. However, I did find a few books that have helped me in my grief journey, and for a while, I found a lot of solace in r/GriefSupport, where at least I wasn't alone in grief.