Dealing with Grief, Using Australian Bush Flower Essences

Dealing with grief using Australian Bush Flower Essences

Using Australian Bush Flower Essences to deal with griefNothing gives you insight into an emotion or physical condition better than when you get thrown into it head-first!

And I write this blog post with this exact scenario in mind: my personal experience of dealing with the loss of my beautiful dog, who has generously and selflessly shared my life for almost sixteen years.

The trouble with experiencing grief, though, is that no matter how kind the people around you are and how many beautiful condolences you receive, you just never feel like anyone around you understands what you are going through. It is almost as though you feel trapped within a bubble: everyone can see you and to them you look as though you are your normal self, but your outlook is hazy and you feel isolated and alone.

And what has compounded this feeling of isolation is that I am grieving for a pet. To me, this has meant that I have felt almost as though I am unjustified in grieving: unlike expectations held for the loss of a parent, partner or another significant person. Feelings arise such as assuming that others will judge you as over-reacting, emotionally unstable or even selfish for putting so much energy into an animal’s life. But grieving soon makes you realise that all you are doing is perceiving others through your own system of judgements, values and beliefs – rather than these being the real emotions or reactions of the people around you.

So it is from this situation that I am most able to testify to the strength and effectiveness of the Australian Bush Flower Essences. Despite the fact that I have used them for many years now, know of their amazing 20-years + case histories and have taught them extensively within the official College Course structure for over two years, nothing proves its efficacy better than when you have to put it to the test for yourself.

And I can honestly say that I am not sure how I would have coped and faced the situation with as much strength, if it were not for the Bush Essences. Life doesn’t stop just because you are grieving, so you often don’t feel you have permission to stop, rest and grieve. However, the Essences have meant that I haven’t had to stop for so long: I have been able to process the long stream of emotions that have reared up one by one, and still continue to meet my obligations.

As anyone who has faced grief will know, it is actually a mixture and progression of emotions that make up the entire state. Elisabeth Kübler-Ross in her 1969 book, On Death and Dying, famously described a model made up of five stages: denial, anger, bargaining, depression and then finally acceptance. This is where the Australian Bush Flower Essences have really come into their own, as they skillfully aided my progression through these emotions (which as yet is still a work in progress!) but have prevented my getting stuck within any one damaging emotion for too long.

Obviously denial is the first stage that I fell into, as you simply believe that it is all a bad dream: everything seemed surreal (the true meaning of that much mis-used word!) and I felt as though I were moving under water. Emergency Essence was what I used in the midst of the loss, as it primarily deals with emotions like fear, terror, despair, and the potential for all these emotions to leave you feeling ungrounded and unable to make stable decisions.

I am very fortunate to have moved through this denial stage immensely quickly thanks to my use of Emergency Essence, and this enabled me to face the situation head-on, own my emotions and keep moving forward. Once I was able to face the situation I was in, I felt the onslaught of sadness which I had to face and had been preventing myself from feeling. As many of us know, sadness unchecked has the potential to lead to depression (one of the stages described by Kübler-Ross), and this was where I most noticed the impact of the Essences I chose to take next. I made up the combination Red Suva Frangipani, Waratah, Bottlebrush & Sturt Desert Rose to assist with the different emotions that were likely to be contributing to my sadness or would present themselves afterwards: Red Suva primarily deals with the broken heart that feels it will never mend; Waratah deals with the potential that the sadness has to evolve into despair; Bottlebrush deals with embracing the concept of letting go of the loved one you are missing; and Sturt Desert Rose deals with any guilt that arises from the false belief that you could have done something more for your loved one while still alive that would have made you a more loving or better person.

Next I was faced with a seemingly unreasonable level of anger at the whole situation: anger at people who didn’t care about their pets but were still graced with their presence; anger at the people around me who didn’t understand my unique situation while I was caring for my dog in her older years; anger at myself for the times I took my dog for granted; anger at the world in general. The Essence that assists with anger is Mountain Devil, and also adding in the Essence for resentment, Dagger Hakea, can be helpful as well for those negative emotions which stem back to prior events. Since there is a strong association with anger evolving into guilt, Sturt Desert Rose again is very helpful in conjunction with these Essences.

I have since cycled many times through the above sets of emotions (including short stints in the bargaining stage), and know that each time the emotions don’t feel so intense. What is most important through the whole process is to ensure that you permit yourself to feel each emotion, and then just as quickly let it go. Since this is not always the way we have learned to deal with our emotions, this is where Australian Bush Flower Essences become so important for us: emotions that are not processed, faced and released will eventually emerge somewhere down the track, and often in the form of dis-ease (refer to the amazing work of Candace Pert if you want to learn more about the link between emotions and our health – or even better, enrol in an Australian Bush Flower Essences College Course with me to explore the entire concept in much greater detail).

Despite not being entirely through the whole process, I know that I will get past this confidently and quickly because of my continued use of the Australian Bush Flower Essences which have enhanced my ability to comprehend, interpret and understand the entire process I am going through. As a last thought, I would like to leave you with this quote from influential psychiatrist, Carl Jung, who so aptly said,

“Even a happy life cannot be without a measure of darkness and the word happiness would lose its meaning if it were not balanced by sadness.” —C.G.Jung

The Australian Bush Flower Essences enable us to realise this truth and to deal with anything that life may throw our way so that indeed, whatever doesn’t kill us DOES make us stronger.

Until next time, be well!

Clare ~ Baliena Flower Therapies 

© 2010 Clare Chapman T/As Baliena Flower Therapies, All Rights Reserved

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I would love for you to leave your comments below about this post &  if you would like me to cover any particular topics or questions in future, just send your request through via my website.

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7 thoughts on “Dealing with grief using Australian Bush Flower Essences”

  1. Thank you so much for taking the time and having the courage to write this article. The information you give and emotions you describe about sadness are exactly what I am currently experiencing. My Grandmother died just a over a month ago. I feel lost. I keep having this question “where are you?” I feel so desolate without her. I’m sure people think I’m coping fine and “over it”. I can’t show or express my feelings but feel very close to tears all the time. I am quite worried I may become depressed – I’ve been there before and recognise how I am going. I simply can’t say how very, very sad I feel right now, there are no words.

    This site has given reassurance and I will try to source some of the remedies you used. They sound helpful.

    Thank you so much again.

    Sharon

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    1. Dear Sharon,

      Thank you so much for letting me know that this piece has made a difference to you, and please accept my condolences for your sad loss.
      Grieving and loss will never be easy and I don’t think we ever get used to it. We just learn to accept it better.

      I know at the time I wrote this, what I needed to know most was that what I was feeling was ‘normal’ and that I was coping the way I should be.
      And I hope that this has helped you realise that it is perfectly normal to need to release those tears, express your feelings to others, and let yourself go through what you need to feel. I also learned that people around you will understand more than you think – but I had to learn to let them help me by sharing with them how I felt (and I know, that is hard to do)!

      I do hope that you are able to find some of the Bush Essences to help you out, as they were indeed a great help to me. I’m not sure where in the world you are located, but if I can help you out at all, please contact me through my website http://www.flowertherapies.com.au.

      Wishing you many flowery blessings,
      Clare

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  2. Dear Clare, I so believe that the Angels guide us through everything and to everything in our lives and I am positive I was guided to your site. Your lovely words are going to help twofold – firstly as I just lost my dearest Mum aged 93 who was the light of my life in every way possible – second because I have a friend who lost her beloved rescue dog and all the emotions you have described she went through and especially found it difficult as those around her (mostly her family) could not believe she had such strong emotions for her dog – so I will be referring her to your site……………….my Mum was surrounded by earth angels in the aged care facility where she was and although I was there almost every day or night I knew that when I was not there love surrounded her – just through your words – and I believe your deeds – you are truly an earth angel – thank you for being passionate about what you believe in and for helping others……….stay well and beautiful……….sending angel hugs your way…………….. Nell

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    1. Hi Nell,

      Thank you so much for taking the time to let me know about your own sad loss, and I am honoured that my words were able to offer you solace at such a difficult time.

      I do also hope that your friend is able to give herself the permission and space to grieve for her furred companion, no matter what the opinions are of those around her. Unfortunately, many humans still don’t understand that love is love (and in fact, the love for an animal is usually the most pure, honest and raw love we will ever know – hence their sudden absence can make our lives feel so very empty).

      I also wish you many blessings for the recent passing of your own Mum – I can understand what you mean when you say she was the ‘light of my life’, as I am also blessed with such a mother! Know that her light will always shine for you, and you will find the new ways that you will ‘see’ this now, just wait and see. 🙂

      Much love and flowery blessings,
      Clare

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  3. Wow..thankyou Clare this post is exactly perfect for how I’m feeling. With the help of the combination you have suggested I feel lovingly supported. My pus “Shadow” was 19yrs 3mths old. The kindest thing I could do for her, however the pain of separation, the sadness and guilt can be so overwhelming. I too took emergency essence on the day and Transitional blend. Now 2days later I still feel numb. So I am going to make up your suggested blend above, red Suva frangipani, waratah, bottlebrush start desert rose. Again thank you so much for sharing the above post. God Bless all our friends whom are family….Keryn ❤

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    1. Hi Keryn,

      I am so glad that the post was helpful for the way you are feeling, and I am sorry for your sad loss. I do hope that the suggested Bush Flower Essence blend eases your heart-pain, and helps you to continue enthusiastically onwards and upwards, knowing that Shadow is very blessed and happy now (as well as always walking beside you).

      Much love and flowery blessings,
      Clare

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