Check out the video below to get started. It covers the background of National Grief Awareness Day and how you can help make it official. Below the video you will find a frank discussion of death, grief, and dying. This is your trigger warning. If you aren't ready to dig into this topic (I totally get it), go ahead and close this window or check out this post. Still here and ready to go? Let's do it.
If you've ever experienced loss, you know that most of the time people don't know what to say, especially people who haven't experienced grief yet. They just really don't understand what's going on for you. The effort to establish National Grief Awareness Day is working to help bring awareness to the effects of grief.
It doesn't matter what kind of loss you've experienced. It doesn't matter if it was a friend, or a spouse or a child, or grandparent or someone else who was close to you. So many of the feelings around grief are universal. They smack us upside the head when we're least expecting it.
It can be hard to maintain regular relationships with people who haven't experienced grief yet. While we are thankful they haven't been on their own grief journey, it doesn't make it any easier for you. And it doesn't make it any easier for me. I need you to know that you're not alone in this journey. Even if the people closest to you don't get it.
National Grief Awareness Day
At the end of this month, on August 30, is the day that someday will be National Grief Awareness Day. There is a petition on change.org and a massive grassroots movement to make the day a thing. The founder of the petition is Angie Cartwright. She started trying to make this a thing a couple of years ago after experiencing a tragic loss. And so far, they're really close. It hasn't quite happened yet, but they are so close to getting enough signatures on the petition on change.org. You can find that here.
It's something that I think is really important that we talk about. If this is something that you want to support and help bring into fruition, I encourage you to sign the petition on change.org. You can also find more info and suggestions of what to do in the Facebook post below.
In August 2019 I did a daily video for almost the whole month. Originally I had planned to do them daily, but that didn't quite happen. I did get close. It was a wonderful exercise for me and it pushed me to examine even more of my own grief story and where I was in my own journey. The playlist below includes a few of those videos.
Talking about Death
In the states, we are not great about talking about death. It's often a taboo subject and discussed in hush tones and whispers. As a millennial who has experienced varying levels of loss beginning at a young age, death is part of my life. I endeavor to live my life out loud.
We talk about death, dying, and how crappy it feels.
If you are experiencing grief in your life right now, so many hugs, so many big hugs. I know that talking about grief can be really hard. Know that you can grieve anyway you need to. No one can tell you what is right or wrong for you.
Know someone who is grieving? This article is just for you. Especially if you are unsure of what to say, afraid of saying the wrong thing, or just tongue tied for unknown reasons. You have an opportunity to be there for your loved one and care for them in this moment.