How Would You React to a Tragedy?
The Loss of a Loved One Challenges ESU Student

By Glenn H. Williams, Jr.
Staff Writer

In our lives, tragedy is something that happens all around us.

Something we try to cover up.

Something that we don’t want coming.

Something we only tell to our closest friends.

For me personally, I try to stay strong and let it not affect me in a negative way, especially around my friends.

Because I try to be the strong silent type for them.

My most recent tragedy was my grandmother dying last year and I was.

At first, I was in disbelief.

Although I knew she was sick, I just couldn’t handle it and I lied to myself that she was alive.

Serving ice cream, I cried serving every other person having breakdowns every few minutes.

Naturally I was just told this information and I had to stay on shift.

So, I endured this, it was very embarrassing and enduring but I survived.

During that time from leaving Dansbury to Hawthorn, I had many bad thoughts.

One which my friends joke about from time to time.

I had a plan of walking from 611 in East Stroudsburg all the way back to Philadelphia.

A two-day journey to and from that I was willing to make, on finals week.

What I went through after and during the 2016 winter break was the 5 stages of grief.

Denial. Believing that what has happened isn’t real.

Anger. Rejecting everything that has happened.

Bargaining. You begin to unleash your feelings.

Right now you would wish and try to do everything you can do to exchange yourself for that person in that situation.

Depression. This usually takes place after the trauma/tragedy and this is the emotional relapse after being angry.

And finally, acceptance. At this stage you can be in between depression but most people accept that this situation has happened and that is done with.

When my grandmother died, I went through all of this, sometimes to this day I can’t believe that she is gone.

She was a light in my life and my first best friend.

I miss and love her, but I know that she would want me to be successful, with or without her.

Me personally, I knew the toll I would undertake for all of this, but I don’t think I was ready for the funeral and the lasting effects after.

What hit me the hardest was seeing her lifeless body in the coffin.

After the funeral, I cried, I stayed up all night crying wishing that day wasn’t real.

I hope I don’t have to ever relive it with a family member, but I know one day I will relieve that day.

What I can do, the advice I can give, isn’t being strong or just roll with it.

But just stay close to love ones.

Don’t shut anyone out or make rash decisions.

There isn’t anything in the world that can beat trauma like this, you have to endure it.

Remember, crying, tears, feeling anything at all, makes us all the more human.

Email Glenn at:
gwillam18@live.esu.edu

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