New Journal Prompt: Identifying Grief Triggers to Find Healing

This month’s journal prompt will be about coping with and understanding grief triggers.

Understanding grief triggers journal prompt

I started writing and sharing my story and found it so healing. Journaling can be therapeutic, bring comfort and help us in the grieving process.

This year I will be sending 12 journal prompts to my email subscribers, one each month. I will be sharing my answers, and if you’re comfortable, I would love to read and share yours! Everything will be kept anonymous. Simply reply to the email if you’d like the opportunity for your story to be shared! This month we will be exploring grief triggers. Grief triggers can happen at any moment, but I have found as we identify them and explore them, it can help us on the path of healing.

I am so excited for this project. I know as we journal together we will find community, acceptance, and support. Live is a trip, join my caravan as we journal and heal together!

As we dive into this journal prompt, I hope we can find healing together as we uncover different grief triggers and heal together.

February Journal Prompt: Grief Triggers

What specific memories, places, or objects tend to trigger feelings of grief for you? Reflect on experiences or situations that stir up intense emotions related to loss.

My Answer: Reflecting on the memories, places, and objects that prompt my specific grief triggers is an emotionally raw journey, one that takes me to the depths of my heartache with each recollection.  As I’ve progressed through my grief journey, I find that my grief triggers evolve, shifting in intensity and significance. 

Certain places act as a reminder of the person I lost and the life we could have had. For instance, our first home together is a grief trigger for me.

I had to drive in that area for an appointment a couple months ago and as soon as I started driving down the road near our old home a flood of emotions came in. I felt that if I just drove to that home in that very moment, he would be waiting for me. Like coming home from a long day at work ready to welcome me with a big hug. The memories started to flood in and the life we had almost didn’t feel real. I really try to avoid that area because I know it’s a grief trigger for me. Maybe someday I’ll be able to drive by without feeling such grief and sorrow. 

Recently my grief triggers have been as simple as my boys asking questions about my husband. The other day they were asking questions about our wedding day because they had been looking at pictures. I always talk about it with them in the moment with lots of enthusiasm, celebrating his memory, but I do have to retreat to solitude and need time to myself to feel the grief. Feeling the grief of the future and what life could have been if he were here instead of talking about him in the past tense with my kids. 

Navigating these grief triggers is like wading through an ocean of emotions, each wave threatening to engulf me in its relentless tide of grief. Yet amidst the pain, there is a reminder that these triggers are a testament to the depth of our bond and love. I’m trying to embrace the triggers and just ride the waves of emotions as I get through them. I realize it’s all part of the grief journey.

Last Months Journal Prompt: Community Responses

Take some time to reflect on the past year and how your grief journey has unfolded. What have you learned?

My Answer: As soon as I begin to grasp the concept of grief, it unpredictably takes an unexpected turn. I thought year two was hard, but this year has proven to me that grief is unpredictable. Grief is unique to each person and no one really understands it as it unfolds. As I’ve looked back on this past year I’ve tried to understand how year five could be harder than any previous year.

Maybe because my boys are older now and asking more questions. Maybe I feel his absence more as my boys grow into their personalities and enter the world. Missing the soccer games, the school play, the funny things they say. 

Maybe it’s been harder because I’ve tried to push myself to date, but the more I date the more I miss him. There are so many variables that could be the cause, but I’ve learned that grief is unpredictable. We might think we have a hold on it, but then out of nowhere it comes in like a flood of emotions and pain. I’m learning to ride the wave of grief and stop trying to understand and predict. Grief remains a constant companion in my life and it’s here to stay. 

Last months replies

From anonymous: This year in May will mark two years since my husband past away from brain cancer at age 33. When I reflect on everything I’ve accomplished in the last year- finding my dream job, deciding to date, and recently moving in with my boyfriend, I find myself feeling disbelief, sadness and pride of everything I’ve experienced in the almost two years he’s been gone.

Sometimes it feels like I’ve lived multiple lifetimes since my husband passed. Through my grief journey, I have learned that when I’m feeling uncomfortable, filled with worry or doubt, to ‘sit’ in the emotions, feel them, process them and then move forward. Even though I miss my husband and think about him every day, I made a decision early in my grief journey that no matter what I feel, I have to keep moving forward, I have to keep living. It’s the only way I’ve been able to survive. 

Life’s A Trip, Join My Caravan for Community and Support

Subscribe to my email to get monthly journal prompts like this one, and if you’d like to share how you’ve identified some grief triggers, be sure to comment here or respond to my email. Grief triggers can be different for everyone, and I know that as we caravan together in this grief journey we can help each other through. Navigating grief can be difficult alone. Join my caravan for support and let me know how I can help.

Caravan Community Read their stories

Trials touch us all. A year ago, I shared my story to offer support, but I never expected the flood of messages from others facing hardships. Their strength inspired me to create Caravan Community, a space on my blog to share their stories. You have a story to share I’d love to feature you on my blog. You can also read their stories below.

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