Grief and loss and heartbreak. It is something we all will face at one point or another in some form.

It is one of the universal things that unites us.

So, why is grief and loss so hard for some people to understand? Don’t we ALL have some way to relate to the pain and loss?

I have experienced grief in my own life.  Those I love have experienced the loss of loved ones.  In my circle we have felt the loss of parents, the loss of siblings, the loss of a child and even the loss of a beloved pet.

Why do people feel the need to judge people who are part of this ‘club’?   I don’t know.

I have thought a lot about this in my life.  I have had to think a lot about this recently as support those I love with loss.  Here is my take on this sucky part of life.

  • You are forever changed and you NEVER get over it. Can you imagine anyone ever saying to a parent who lost a child ‘you are not over this yet’? I know it has happened.
  • This becomes part of your new ‘normal’.
  • The grief is love. The love does not die with the person. Grief is love’s new form.
  • Don’t avoid your friend who is grieving. Talk about the stuff you would talk about before. Even if it’s an emotional time for them, simply saying ‘I’m sorry’ can go a long way.
  • If you are the one grieving, it is a roller coaster. Sometimes will be better than others. Allow yourself to feel. It is OK to ask for help in that process, even if it is a simple as a hug.
  • Talking about the person lost will not hurt your friend or loved-one more than they already hurt.
  • Nothing or no one will ever replace that person. Life will move on, but that person will never be replaced.
  • They will ALWAYS be missed. Big events like holidays, birthday, family reunions, and weddings will always have an empty spot. But what may sneak up on you are the smaller moments when you go to say something to that person or want to share something with them.
  • It is OK to honor your loved one in the ways you see fit, even if it seems quirky or not how most people would do it. And if you are supporting a loved one with loss and they want to do something that is unique go with it.  If you are going to be a nay-sayer it better be for a very, very good reason.

OK.  I am done.  Tell people you love that you love them.  Hug your kids. Be kind to each other.