When people say they could just die from a broken heart, listen to them. They are right. Broken Heart Syndrome is now a bona fide condition. How often have you heard of a grieving spouse dying shortly after their loved one? Research has shown that they are more likely to suffer a heart condition.
When people are grieving over the loss of a loved one due to a variety of circumstances such as death, divorce, break-up, etc., they are likely not to take very good care of themselves. They can become depressed, not eat or take their meds and get less sleep. All of which can be a recipe for disaster.
Intense grief brings on psychological stress, increased heart rate, blood pressure, and clotting, and there you have a perfect recipe for a heart attack or stroke. This can lessen over time, but grief has its timetable for each individual.
I know for myself that grieving takes a long, long time. I still grieve over my divorce from ten years ago, and at the time I literally prayed for death to come and take the pain away. The pain WAS physical, not just emotional. It took me more than a year to feel like any semblance of my former self. I felt like I aged visibly ten years almost overnight. My swollen eyes never bounced back and left me with more wrinkles etc. It really took its toll on me. Now I know that I was NOT crazy as some people told me. It is a real condition. Of course, I could have told you that years ago.
The death of my 3 beloved pets last year made me physically ill for days after each one. I still cry buckets of tears over them, and give myself headaches and swollen eyes and I can FEEL my heart aching.
They say that time heals all wounds. I will say the initial intense pain does gradually subside, but it never goes away entirely. It leaves physical and emotional scars on your heart and your brain and your soul. You can never go back to what you once were. You can only go forward and be a better person for what you have experienced.