Grief is a very difficult word to explain….the why, is because each of us has felt grief in some specific way, but when we try to explain it to others, we realize that it is personal to us…different, yet the same.
After several years of practicing elder law and dealing with families, the word that aptly seems to define grief, is the feeling of being “alone”. We can be in a room full of people laughing and talking, and yet, we can still feel alone.
I have been asked by clients and friends how can we help someone who feels this way….their husband or wife has passed, their partner in marriage has decided they want a divorce, and the common element is that feeling of being alone.
My simple answer is this, we need to walk the talk. Is this too trite or simplistic an answer? What do you mean by this?
Calling your friend on the phone, and “checking” in with them, not just once in a while, but maybe 2 or 3 times a week.
Telling your friend that you would like to come over and visit, bringing over something that your friend might enjoy…asking your friend to come over to your house for lunch or coffee…. Simply, just listening to them and maybe saying at the end, “remember I love you”.
If we can picture in our own mind what this feeling of being alone does to us, then we can visualize what actions would make this feeling, loosen its grip, and maybe help others.
There are dozens of books that talk about grief, especially when a loved has passed, and knowing that this is a passage, normal and necessary. What the books don’t say is that if we can “accompany” someone through this process be a part of this process, then this daunting feeling of being alone, loses its power. Would we not welcome this when grief comes our way?
Take it for what it is…..it’s just as I see it.