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Articles > Life April, 10, 2021

Silent thoughts and accepting grief

Lauren Herd
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I was going to try and write you all a positive article about self acceptance, but I think it’s important to address the fact that things aren’t always positive. This being said, you can find light in the darkness.

A good example of this is the yin and yang and its associated symbol ☯. It demonstrates how there is bad in the good and good in the bad, which provides balance in the chaos. We need this balance; the bad makes us appreciate the good instead of taking it for granted.

Another example that’s more pop culture based is the movie ‘The Book of Life,’ which is centred around Latin American culture and the day of the dead. It astutely describes a ‘Land of the Remembered’, where all the souls who are spoken about and thought about reside, and the ‘Land of the Forgotten’, where all the souls who had been forgotten go to pass on further. This philosophy has helped me a lot as it made me realise that it’s important to keep talking about those who have died and remember them warmly.

I’m not a professional by any means when it comes to grief or processing anything like that; I just want to offer comfort to those who need it and say that you’re not alone.

One thing I’ve discovered is that we all process grief at different speeds and we all have different reactions. Anger and disbelief are the most common reactions as we take our emotions out on other people and other things. Just because someone else is calm about the situation doesn’t mean you also have to be.

Scream, shout, cry. Don’t force yourself into a box where you expect yourself to do the same things as everyone else who is grieving. We all have our own ways of processing it and it’s important that we act on them. I write a lot of poetry and songs and channel the energy into a positive outcome so I have a healthy outlet for my emotions.

Moreover, it’s important not to suffer alone or in silence. I’ve found it’s freeing to speak about the situation with a friend, whether that was setting everything out neatly or sending a stream-of-consciousness text message about how I was feeling without context. I understand that one of the most frustrating things someone can hear is, “If you need to talk, I’m here”, because it is not always that easy to talk about. When people tell me that, I’m always questioning whether they mean it or they say it because they know I wouldn’t reach out.

I know it’s hard to speak about our situations and grief because it always seems so personal and sacred and we don’t want to break that vow of silence. Keeping it all in and pushing your emotions down is like shaking a bottle of Coca-Cola; one day, it will pop. We need to express ourselves and our emotions when we experience grief so we don’t end up popping.

There are 5 stages of grief: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, acceptance

Don’t be afraid to go through these in a different order, and don’t be afraid to be stuck in one stage. In this case, the end goal is what truly matters, not how we get there. Processing grief isn’t a sprint, it’s a walk through a forest of memories; we’re allowed to take our time and enjoy the view. Don’t be afraid to visit places you’ve been before; allow yourself to be in any stage you want as often as you need. It is a long road to acceptance and there is no shortcut.

In the meantime, take as many pictures as you can with everyone you love — live life to the full so you can look back fondly on those memories. Have conversations about philosophy and how you think the world will look in ten years, go roller skating, learn how to crochet. The memories are what matter; goodbye is not forever, it’s just until you meet again.


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  1. Meadow

    “ Moreover, it’s important not to suffer alone or in silence.” At this exact moment, my grandfather is dying. We do not know how long it will take, but it won’t be another year. The past week I have been crying and sobbing, but I have also talked. To my housemates , my counselors, everyone who wanted to hear it would. It really calms me down ; talking does help.

  2. Dyani

    As someone who is experiencing her first actual grief, this article makes me feel like it is okay if I break down. I am very terrified as I’ve never lost someone important to me before, and I was afraid I won’t be able to handle it, but that is okay. As the article says, everyone deals with it in different speeds.

  3. Jubi

    I think… it’s a really thoughtful piece. I agree with anger and disbelief being a prevalent emotion when dealing with grief. I lost my cat back in December and I remember feeling angry at myself throughout it all. Angry that she had passed, angry at myself for not loving her even more than I had. It hurt cause I couldn’t enjoy Christmas as much as I would have, you know? It impacts you in such a way where you function so differently than the days before a passing. I felt like it wasn’t really happening, that maybe she’d pop up from her spot in my room and start meowing again. On top of it all, my family isn’t really a “hey you can go ahead and cry if you need”. We’re the type to cry silently and go on about our day. But I broke down one day and my mom broke down with me. I remember feeling so much lighter afterwards. It’s so so so incredibly important to have/know someone you can go to when dealing with grief, especially when it’s someone who knows what you’re going through

  4. eliza

    i adore this article! it is so inspirational and well written! i give it a 10/10! thank you for this, it really helped!

  5. James Resnik

    I think that this is an extremely insightful article, that touches on very important topics with a certain sensitivity, meaning that the reader is able to understand them more deeply. The themes discussed throughout are also very important to our life as human beings.

  6. aralyn holt

    this is so well written and flows so well together . it is so detailed and right to the point . I absolutely love it .

  7. Saturn

    .. This was the best way to reach out to others. Recently, I lost my gran and I couldn’t come to grips on the reality. It hit so fast. And that’s what happens. Reading this allowed me to know that at least someone else understood the whole struggle. Even from a more sophisticated perspective. Reading this, gave me hope that there is a brighter time ahead of me. I just need to push forward. It would be amazing to see others see and interact with this, especially those who are grieving and need the help to get through tough times.

  8. alex

    this is very beautifully written and an amazing take on grief.

  9. Gabriella

    I think that the author does an amazing job pointing out that there is darkness but you can get through it. The article is very well written and the author is well spoken!

  10. billiestan

    i love this and it’s so good. 10 stars ✨

  11. Tani!

    I appreciate your words, Thankyou for this boost of self esteem I generally lack. I really am delighted to read this beautiful piece of writing!

  12. alexandra

    I think… this was a good read

  13. duke

    Awesome

  14. Evie

    I think… that this was awesome as hell anyways yes!

  15. lauren

    i think this statement is true and i agree with it because everyone feels grief and feels pain, but you can’t always be happy for everyone. it is hard sometimes but you just have to try and put it behind you if you can and love the rest of your life to the full and try and be happy.

  16. amber parker

    I think this article explains everything that we need to know about the main topic. which is yin yang. the main source of life ( the good and bad in our life ), and this article has alot of good points in life which is proven that it’s okay to feel something that’s good and even bad.

  17. lucia

    this was so beautifully written & explained ! keep up the good work 🙂
    honestly, hands down one of the best pieces i’ve ever read on this matter.