Grief is all around us. The Christmas holiday is just wrapping up. Overstuffed trash bags filled with festive wrapping papers peeking out the top fill the dumpsters. Christmas trees are starting to be stuffed back into the storage bin or tossed out to be picked up for disposal. While the signs of a joyous holiday are being packed away as simple memories, there seems to be a feeling of grief still in the air.
The past two years or so have been like no other in our history. A global pandemic that slowly trickles on. Our communities seem to be more divided than ever with a lack of empathy and hurtful “comments” seeming to be a theme of this time. It feels as though grief is all around us.
“Hurt People, Hurt People”?
They say, “hurt people, hurt people”. Maybe that is what we are right now, a whole bunch of hurting people. So many have lost loved ones in the last couple years. Death would occur whether there was a pandemic or not. Death still occurs whether people have a positive attitude and are kind to their neighbors. We will experience the death of a loved one and we will eventually cross the bridge from life to death ourselves. It is the one thing we have in common.
Grief is All Around Us
This year it feels like grief is all around us. Maybe it is just me but it seems as though every other day I hear of someone who is experiencing the loss of a loved one. One of the common themes of this holiday season was, I am not in the mood for Christmas. One person warned their social media followers that Christmas had died with his Father and no new traditions or holiday cheer could change that.
Another let the world know that they did not want any guests on Christmas because they were just too sad.
This quote by Billie Lourde about grief and remembering her mother Carrie Fisher (who played Princess Leia in the Star Wars film),perfectly sums up grief.
“People always ask me what stage of grief I’m in. And my answer is never simple. I’m in a different stage of grief in each moment of everyday life. My grief is a multi-course meal with many complicated ingredients. An amuse bouche of bargaining followed by an angry appetizer with a side of depression, acceptance for the entree and of course a little denial or dessert. And that’s how grief should be- all things all at once-actually there is no should in grief-grief just is whatever it is for you and that’s how it ‘should’ be.”
Everyone grieves differently and we should have the freedom to celebrate however we want, or not at all. Carrying on traditions in memory of a loved one is something that some may want to do to feel close to whomever they lost, others may avoid it all together. When it feels as though grief is all around us, it is a good time also for some empathy and kindness.
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