I've been reading the Al-Anon book "Opening Our Hearts, Transforming Our Losses" to help myself get through the grief of losing a loved one. A lot of the content has to do with loss around the disease of alcoholism, so it doesn't always pertain to my situation. I lost my 103-year old grandma, who was probably one of the healthiest and most spiritual people in my life. However, my immense reaction to her death did have to do with the effect that alcoholism has had on my life. It felt like I lost the only person who has ever loved me unconditionally, plus the person who represented my Greater Power for that very reason. So my grief has been deep and that is okay - my feelings are okay. The following quote from the book is so true:
"Today I know that grief is the price I pay for having loved and having been loved well." pg. 107
And I was able to make amends to my grandma by spending quite a bit of time with her the last couple of years. I would granny-sit so my aunt who lived next door could go on vacation. I was able to give her time the way she was able to give me time when I was a child. When I was so involved with my husband's active drinking, I had no time for most of my relatives and friends. I lost many relationships, but grandma was always there for me when I decided to drop in for a few hours and then later, for a few days. Like my Greater Power, she did not judge or complain, she just loved me. I am so grateful she lived long enough for me to really understand that.