Thursday, December 9, 2010

Grief: Not by the Book

Post 19
In my telling of the story, I’ve been playing with the Kubler-Ross model of grief. Basically, the model says that we react to life changing events such as a death or incurable disease in five stages:
1.       Denial
2.       Anger
3.       Bargaining
4.       Depression
5.       Acceptance
In truth, I don’t think I have experienced this sequence so cleanly. First, I don’t see any bargaining opportunities. What is is.  I experienced deep depression early on.  Perhaps it was triggered by my declining stores of dopamine, but it was before I had a clue that I had PD.  I am managing my depression with drugs.  
Denial and acceptance are very real to me. But, rather than moving from one stage to another, denial and acceptance exist separately and simultaneously in my mind. They are both useful. Denial keeps me in the moment with today’s symptoms, not my eventual decline. I accept today’s symptoms: they are real.  Toss in a little anger with that acceptance and, like a chemical reaction, I get resolve.  I do what I need to do. 
 What needs doing is to move, and to keep moving.

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