There is this thing about grief. It is so different based on who you lost and how you lost them. Yet there are common threads woven into each loss that connect this community of aching hearts. This sentiment was underscored during my recent guest-host in Circles Audio Chat Room.
As the Co-founder of Goodgrief App, I talk about death, loss and grief all of the time.That evening, as I joined this group of grievers, I listened to the stories of those in the throes of grief. As each person shared their sadness, a wave of emotion struck me like a bolt of lightning. With each strike, I was there, as if it were yesterday, feeling all of the feels of those moments in grief.
For those suffering from loss:
There is a need for validation.
Am I doing this right? Is this normal? Why does this pain hit me this way?
There is a need for hope.
Will this go away? Will I be able to be happy again? Does guilt or anger ever subside?
There is a need for advice.
What worked for you? How do I recover from this? What should I do to move forward from here? How do I connect with others in the midst of my sadness?
There is a need for a timeline.
When should I feel better? When should I be getting together with friends? When will I be able to celebrate holidays? When do the tears subside?
There is a need to understand the words and actions of others.
Their parents don’t understand. The family has chosen to walk away from us. My friends have abandoned me. Where are all the people that offered to help? I want them to be a part of my life, even though the person is gone….I just don’t know how.
The emotions were so palpable to me. It’s been seven years since my most recent loss. In those seven years, I have done a lot of emotional work. Yet, one hour in Circles Audio Chat Room and the emotional and physical pains I experienced were unearthed. This is proof that grief doesn’t go away. We don’t get to escape it. We learn how to carry it more neatly. We lean on others who are walking the path of grief with us. If we are slightly ahead, we warn others of the treacherous turns and offer guidance to step slowly and gently. We reach out with immense compassion. We understand one another.
Inside the audio chat room, there was an abundance of empathy and support. There is no right or wrong way to grieve. But sharing the pain, with those who understand, helps to move forward. If you are suffering from the loss of a loved one, I encourage you to download Goodgrief app and join Circles.Together, we can survive our sadness.