When our daughter, Amy, died in an automobile accident, I became a lifelong member of a group no one wants to be a part of, grieving parents. For months, I attended meetings of The Compassionate Friends, where membership consisted of being a bereaved parent, sibling, or grandparent. Nothing else mattered, – not income, race, gender, sexual orientation, or religion. Losing our children created a unique bond between us. Among these new friends, I cried, talked about my child, and found hope in the experience of those further along this path of belonging.
I communed with this group for many months, and I still speak with friends I made along my journey. They taught me that I did not have to suffer alone. They taught me simple coping skills for the early days of loss. They showed me joy was still possible, even amidst grief. They listened without judgment, and loved without reservation. They hugged me and held my hand and walked beside me. They allowed me to belong.
~ Lisa Kiel
Lisa, so glad you had a group to belong to that helped you and is still helping you get through such a devastating loss, even though this is a group that parents never hope to join. Hugs to you and Gary as you continue to find joy in life.
Finding Joy in the midst of deep and entrenched grief is a miracle. You were so fortunate to find this group of people who were working at finding balance. There is no one else who truly understands how deep personal grief can go and how it can distort your perceptions . Finding balance is really all one can hope for , and not letting the grief eclipse what glimmer of light you can find through positive memories of your lost love.
I have a certain camaraderie with you through the sudden and violent death of my mother. Camaraderie is comfort , still, one lives with it alone.
I’m so glad that you were able to belong to such an incredible group. Thank you for sharing, I know it must have been difficult. Thank you my dear friend.