National Grief Awareness Day is today, August 30th. It is supposed to be a reminder of the grief and taking time to heal from loss. It is also a reminder that grief doesn’t have an end date. Do the people doing the grieving need a reminder that grief doesn’t end?
 
The thing about the descriptor is that it is vague, isn’t it?
 
Maybe it is a reminder to be aware of your grief.
 
Sit with it for a while.
 
Remember it.
 
Grow in it.
 
Who or what you are grieving isn’t the important thing.
 
The important thing is that we remember that we are grieving and we are not alone in it.
 
Everyone is grieving something.
 
Someone.
 
Widows are lucky in a weird way, we are reminded every day to sit and mourn and grieve. Every day there are little reminders:
 
“That nail polish she liked was on sale,”
 
“The kids are starting a new grade and Daddy isn’t here to see it,”
 
“Oh! That bill is due today, I should get them to pay it.”
 
“Is all I need from the store is bread? Let me text David and see…”
 
We see it when our children grow and look more and more like them. We remember through their friends, colleagues, and loved ones. Through laughter on holidays, and tears through anniversaries.
 
It is easy to become isolated in our own grief like we are the only ones that can understand it. But, what if we use our knowledge of the difficult subject matter and reach out? What if we email one of his colleagues? Or an old supervisor to see how they are pulling through – especially in your early days. A friend? The guy he rode motorcycles with on Sundays? Her best friend? A friend of the family. An Uncle.
 
Maybe today isn’t a day for widows as a reminder to sit with our grief but a day for everyone else to sit with their own grief. Can we just sit with them as they did with us and help them move forward.
 
“Hi, today was national grief day and I wanted to reach out. I know you adored them as much as I did and if you want to talk…” a glass of wine, some stories, a cup of tea, a joke, light some candles maybe play their favorite movie in the background.
 
Or not.
 
Start some new rituals. Do some old ones. Or not.
 
Grief is a lot of things. Complicated. It is messy. It is funny at the wrong times. It is scary and turbulent and upside down.
 
It is Weird.
 
It is different for a lot of people and a lot of families. No person or family will grieve the same way even if we are grieving the same person or familial relationships.
 
It is isolating.
 
What if it doesn’t have to be?
 
“I know you are grieving something…someone…him…her…them…can we do it together?”
 
What if instead of folding in ourselves we look up and forward and use all that practicing on a daily basis to help someone else in healing? Even if it’s only for a while.

About 

Donna (they/them) is originally from Ontario Canada but now resides in Nova Scotia Canada. Donna met their husband David when they were 14. Literal best friends and completely inseparable, then that trope happened in rom-coms when they realized there was something more. Together Donna and David navigated life, love, and all the weirdness that comes with it (including a cat). They stumbled through, poverty, unemployment, interracial relationships, and Donna's queerness (and how that redefined things or did it?) and a mental health journey that always seemed ever-changing with nerdy humor that was unique and all them. In August 2018 Donna found David passed away in their bed early one morning, later they found out that there was no cause of death. Now Donna is still trying to navigate life, love, and weirdness all on their own with a little help from their friends, and a whole lot of coffee.