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Grief Awaits the Village

Day 28: Grief awaits the village

One thing I say a lot is that I don’t think I would have a job if our western culture hadn’t lost connection to our innate human ability to be with grief. I believe we are all born with the capacity to sit with others in pain, witness what is irreversible, and companion our fellow humans in the worst moments of their life. I believe that we came from ancient people and cultures that had this figured out—that grief needs community, and the pain of sitting with it is not something that was ever meant to be carried alone.

We are living in a time of such isolation—and covid has only exacerbated that. Yet there are still ways to have a village for our grief. A village might be just a few people, and it might be many. The grief that awaits a village is aching to be seen, not fixed, witnessed, not transferred, companioned, not turned away from. That is what our ancestors knew—that grief needed the village to begin to evolve and change. And we can relearn that, too, as it is part of what makes us human.

Welcome to my second, 100-day project. I hope to provide a daily offering on something grief-related. I am a grief therapist and educator working with people in Oregon, Washington, DC, Maryland, and Maine. This feed is in honor of each person who has trusted me with their stories and wisdom during their grief journey. I hope that others may benefit from simple and straightforward talk about a topic that can be difficult.

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