The Physical Manifestations of Grief in Caregivers

by Jun 24, 2024Grief, In Parents, PTSD, Self-Care and Stress, Special Needs Parenting0 comments

Jolene explains how the heaviness of loss and sorrow can contribute to the physical manifestations of grief in caregivers.

The physical manifestations of grief in caregivers are unexpected and pervasive. That, in a nutshell, is what God has been teaching me since the death of my mother on June 23, 2023.

Mom’s suffering was great during her final 2 years on this earth. My siblings and I had no desire to prolong her life through medical intervention. We rejoiced when her suffering ended. Her funeral was a celebration, a sharing of memories, a gathering of extended family who loved her and supported us. We wept, we hugged, we said our goodbyes, and my siblings moved on with their lives.

I tried to do the same. A few weeks after Mom’s death, my husband and I packed our new camper and headed west for a much-needed vacation. On the second day, we turned around due to truck trouble and prayed as it limped all 500 miles to our home.

Soon after our return I started limping due to foot pain. The foot pain moved into my leg and then into my hip. During this time my uncle, who was like a second father to me, died. In mid-October, physical pain landed me in bed. From there I limped to the doctor’s office, was diagnosed with a pinched nerve, given a cortisone shot, and started physical therapy.

In an attempt to spare you the details, here’s a pared down timeline of life from then until now:

November and December 2023: Physical therapy, physical therapy, and more physical therapy.

December 2023: Pinched nerve better, bursitis causes by pinched nerve exercises worse.

January 2024: Physical therapy relieves bursitis, but pain from iliotibial band (IT band) increases.

To read the rest of The Physical Manifestations of Grief in Caregivers, visit the Key Ministry website.

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By Jolene

Jolene Philo is the author of several books for the caregiving community. She speaks at parenting and special needs conferences around the country. Sharing Love Abundantly with Special Needs Families: The 5 Love Languages® for Parents Raising Children with Disabilities, which she co-authored with Dr. Gary Chapman, was released in August of 2019 and is available at local bookstores, their bookstore website, and Amazon. See Jane Dance!, the third book in the West River cozy mystery series, which features characters affected by disability, was released in October of 2023.


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Meet Jolene

Jolene Philo is a published author, speaker, wife, and mother of a son with special needs.



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