I Will Not Tell You How to Grieve
I will not tell you how to grieve, for I don’t know all that you’re grieving.
I won’t tell you how long you should grieve, for I won’t know when you’re done, as if you can ever be done.
I won’t know when you’ve begun to grieve, for the shock that can rock you might leave you numb.
And grieving only happens when the time is ripe.
I don’t know your time, just as you won’t know mine.
I won’t tell you not to cry. Tears not cried are tears denied.
We cry out in stress to help untangle the mess.
We need to feel to heal the messes.
Life is messy; grief the messiest.
I won’t tell you, “At least you’ll have your memories.”
“At least…” nothing.
I won’t tell you that your loved one is still here in spirit,
insulting your ache of wanting to wrap your arms around them.
I won’t tell you how long it should take, what it should look like, or what the grief of others with similar losses looked like.
There are no similar losses.
Others’ grief is their own, just as yours is your own.
I will do my best not to say anything that undermines what you feel, judges how you feel, or how you express/don’t express it.
I will hope for that same space in your heart as I navigate the uncharted waters of my iceberg.
I will not tell you how to grieve.