There are no words that one can say that will take away the grief that one feels inside after losing someone or something - the deep hole that feels like it’s never ever going to become full again and for some, it may never and that’s okay.
Grief is a funny thing. It’s not linear and there is no one way to cope. Grief is an emotion that every single person will experience at some point in their lives. It’s a natural response to loss, whether it’s the loss of a loved one, a job, a relationship, or anything else that holds significant meaning to us. While grief is a universal experience, the way that we each process and cope with it is unique.
As we know, as humans, we all handle grief differently, which at times can make it difficult and awkward as to how best to support someone. You have people, on the one hand, being awkward not knowing what to say because they don’t want to offend you, standing there in awkward silence or embracing you in an unwanted hug and then you have people, on the other hand, saying “socially acceptable statements” such as “I’m sorry for your loss” or sending “socially acceptable gifts” such as flowers when you, the person experiencing grief may never want to hear or see such a thing again.
With the recent loss that we have experienced in the community, the shock has slightly passed and the hype around social media has finished and for many life is going back to “normal”- yet for others, life won’t feel the same again. Many can feel this weird paradox of existence; like fuck everyone is just living and going about their lives and I’m over here not even believing my life is real right now. It can seem pretty isolating and hard to navigate through. One of the most important things to remember is that there is no "right" way to grieve, and everyone experiences it differently. However, there are some things that people have found useful that can help ease the pain and make the process more manageable:
Seek Support: It's important to reach out to friends and family for support during this time. Joining a support group or seeking counselling can also be beneficial.
Take Care of Yourself: Make sure to take care of your physical and emotional needs. This includes getting enough sleep, eating well, and engaging in activities that you enjoy.
Express Yourself: Expressing your feelings through writing, art, or music can be a cathartic way to process your emotions.
Give Yourself Time: Healing takes time, so be patient with yourself and allow yourself to grieve at your own pace.
Remember Your Loved One: It's important to remember the good times with your loved one and to keep their memory alive.
Many say time heals things, but many also hate that saying - neither is right nor wrong. Grief can be delayed and grief can come out of nowhere. Be prepared for this.
You are sitting drinking a coffee in a cafe and you are swarmed with emotions despite not thinking about the situation or a person. This is all normal and it’s especially important to realise. One week you or a family member may be travelling well and the next week it may be a little more challenging. No one can predict how they will respond to a tragedy and people can feel intense emotions that they thought they would never experience or even have within them. As I have said to many people before, people do not need fixing, they need space to feel like they are being held. With one’s world crumbling around them, just knowing that they are physically or metaphorically held is important. So how do we “help” someone with grief - we listen and hold space.
As life inevitably does move forward we want you to know that we are still here to support you or your family at any time throughout your journey. We don’t have the answers but we honour the difficulties of facing each day and remind ourselves, it’s one step in front of the other despite how small that step may be.