I have friends and family that have suffered the deepest of losses. They’ve buried babies, parents, siblings, cousins, aunts, uncles, and best friends. For those of us in proximity to the ones that have suffered loss we can often time find ourselves without words; not knowing what to say so we remain silent.
While silence can be golden, sometimes it is dark. No, our loved ones don’t need us to answer their “whys” or to speak some encouraging word to them or quote scriptures and inspirational sayings.
They need us to say “I don’t know what to tell you, but I’m so sorry.” Admitting that we don’t have the words is okay. Just telling them that we love them is enough in that moment. Not being embarrassed by their grief, but leaning into with them can be uncomfortable and messy but so needed.
Life will go on and as the weeks, months, years go by their new normal will be permanent and it will feel to them that no one remembers or understands what “that day” is like. Again, don’t remain silent on those days. Ignoring the anniversary of the loss doesn’t make it go away. Acknowledging it, simply letting them know you are thinking about them or sending a text that says “love you, praying for you.” will NOT cause them to spiral emotionally.
You won’t send them into a deep depression, what you will do is apply healing balm to a wound, you’ll show them compassion and thoughtfulness and that they and their loved one is not forgotten.
Remembering will not bring the departed back but it will give so much comfort and life to the ones who remain.