Much of this journey called grief I still don’t fully understand. I try…and I know little by little, in time…I will understand much that I don’t know today. there are a few things I do know for certain…and I feel it appropriate to share them…there have been so many families torn apart this past month in particular, by CF or other causes…and I’ve seen so many people unintentionally cause pain to those deep in grief simply by well meaning comments that are actually, not at all helpful to the families. I’m not trying to make anyone feel bad or guilty..but being on this side of life I know firsthand how much a comment while said with a loving heart and caring spirit, can stick with a person and hurt them very deeply. maybe the person will never express the pain it caused…but it will always kind of be there…there are many comments and situations that still now I struggle with from time to time. forgiveness and love are there too…but something comes up that may trigger it…and today I just needed to pray for a peaceful heart. I felt angry all over again. so please just know this is from love…
please don’t ever say to a grieving friend:
“it wasn’t meant to be”
“God needed another angel”
“now he can breathe free”
“no more pain”
“everything happens for a reason”
“god has a plan”
or comments of that sort. while we fully know the pure intentions meant behind the words…as a parent whose lost a child…when someone has said something like that to me it enrages me. trust me that I know god has a plan…and I would rather Conner be free from pain…and I do believe he’s in heaven, whether or not he’s an angel is unknown…but here’s what I know. I’d still rather have him here with me. and any parent whose lost a child would say the same thing. when I see these or comments like these posted to people…I just cringe. these comments are in no way helpful.
an alternative…a simple “I’m so sorry for your pain…or your loss” is a phrase that is genuine and touches deeply in our hearts. because nobody can change the outcome of the situation, and we don’t expect people to…we just want to be able to express our pain freely and have people love us in the pain without trying to justify it somehow or candy coat it. when someone says I’m sorry…it’s the best two words that I could ever imagine hearing.
please don’t ever do to a grieving person:
when they express pain…don’t change it to your own pain comparison. it’s not helpful, and it’s actually quite hurtful. what it says to a parent whose hurting is that our pain isn’t unique..and isn’t important on it’s own. that it doesn’t matter. I absolutely believe and know that each loss causes a great deal of people so much anguish and pain…but the pain the immidiate family feels is unlike any other person will feel…so turning their comments of pain into your own sadness or your own grief really sends the message that our pain isn’t justified. and that my friends hurts the most.
instead…parent to parent of childloss we know the pain the other family is feeling so comments like that almost never happen…but even distant family or friends who feel the loss as well should just simply send prayers, offer love or to help in some way…and never compare the pain that is so different…its hard to explain but it is just painful.
don’t go overboard talking about the loss…as well as ignore it and never talk about it…it’s a very delicate balance…but follow the cues of the person in pain. somedays they will want to talk about them a lot…or the pain all day…and somedays just don’t even want to mention the name because the pain is so intense…or they simply want a day to not think about it.
please don’t forget the person/family after the dust settles:
some of the people that huddled so close to us before, during and immidately after Conners passing are no where to be found anymore. not so much as a text to say hello…or anything. and that’s very hard. so while it’s so important to be there when everything is new…and the pain is outwardly raw…I think it’s even more important to be there for the long haul. doesn’t mean you have to call everyday or anything like that. each family needs their own balance, definitely. but to go from being so close to someone…maybe even sharing in the death of that person which is a moment that forever changed us…and then to not hear from them much later…just hurts like hell.
November I can’t even count how many we lost to CF. young and old, even a brand new baby. and right now a dear family is batteling the loss of a precious soul who reached out to us in Conners end days…I ask that you pray for Spencer Riddle and his wife, Nikki. Please send love and prayers to this beautiful soul as he’s spending his last days with his new wife…in a hospital bed barely holding on. my heart breaks for you Nikki. and one thing for certain…is you can count on me to be there to check in on you for years to come…because all we have in this world is love, friendships and time. and there is no better way to spend time then loving others….
never be afraid to reach out to someone grieving…many days they are completely ignored…and what a difference even just a hello or a genuine smile can truly make…
blessings to you all…
and as always…LOVE LOVE LOVE because nothing else matters…