Grief. It's been heavy on my heart lately. Holidays bring with them, a joyous spirit which can sometimes be woven together with sadness and the reality of a loss.
I was chatting with some dear friends about how when people are going through a tough time, either a spouse or parent or child has passed away, everyone is there for you. You have incredible support and they bend over backwards for you. But after a few weeks, or a month or so...people stop asking. People don't call or send you a card, or check to see how you are doing.
Often it takes such a time to grieve that the time people need you most, is those several weeks to months after when the adrenaline that you get pushes you through the hardest times, and you are left in a fog.
I think sometimes, people don't know what to do. They are worried that bringing it up might cause pain, but I believe that most often people do want you to ask and talk about it, they need to continue to feel supported and loved and especially around the holidays when the loss can feel fresh and so severe, they need to be reminded they aren't alone.
I have a few friends who have recently miscarried, and while this is a loss unlike any other because you loved something you never laid eyes on, it's a truly difficult time. After losing our baby, the first two weeks I didn't want to see anyone or talk about it to anyone. After those weeks passed, I wanted to people to ask and I needed to validate what happened. A miscarriage is hard to understand unless you've walked through it, but let me tell you, it's not just the woman who suffers. The Daddy grieves too, and it a completely different kind of way. Don't forget to check on him as well, it can often take much longer for him to process it and be able to move forward.
If you know someone who has lost a loved one recently, even in the past year...take time to reach out to them. Send them an actual letter, call them on the phone. Take some cookies and bring your kids along, allow them to bless others.
Sometimes when a spouse passes away, the friends of that couple may feel awkward because before it was the four of them together and now it's not. Please don't let your friendship dissolve because things have changed, they still need you.
I would encourage you to step outside your comfort zone, your walls and seek someone who needs to be lifted up. Love on them, and I promise you it won't be wasted and you will be blessed as well.