7 Ways to Help A Loved One That is Grieving

I remember 2 years ago if someone died I wouldn’t know what to say to their loved ones. Do I give them an awkward hug? They probably are so flooded with messages they won’t even notice mine. Maybe I’m bothering them. Do I send them something? How do I get their mailing address? What the … Continue reading “7 Ways to Help A Loved One That is Grieving”

I remember 2 years ago if someone died I wouldn’t know what to say to their loved ones. Do I give them an awkward hug? They probably are so flooded with messages they won’t even notice mine. Maybe I’m bothering them. Do I send them something? How do I get their mailing address? What the heck do I even say?

You can be completely confused. I GET IT! I’ve now been on both sides.

Since James died, other people have died around me and guess what, I’ve gone back to being awkward!! How stupid is that? It’s because humans just don’t naturally know what to say. It’s hard to put yourself in that person’s shoes. This past year though I’ve tried to make an effort to reach out to anyone that has had a loved one die.

When James passed away I was flooded with messages, emails, some yummy baked goods, you name it, it was probably there. The thing was, at the time I really didn’t notice. Maybe I thought, oh yum this is good. Or maybe I thought, wow that was a really nice thing to share and didn’t reply. Guess what though, over time I’ve gone back to each and every message and read them all. I still have not replied and don’t intend to. But I sure appreciate the people that reached out even if it was a 2 sentence “I’m sorry for your loss. I can’t imagine what you are going through and you are in my prayers.” Hey, check out how easy that was. Do you know what I hated…”Please let me know if I can help.” I’m not sure why it annoyed me. But it did.

Anyone who has lost a loved one understands it’s hard to know what to say. So I have come up with a list of 10 ways to help a loved one grieve. They range from small to larger things, but I hope that if it helps some of you out there.

Share a memory: I love this. I really really love this. I don’t care if it’s something I knew about or something that is a new story to me, it’s like a small gift. It shows they have not forgot about that person. It shows they are thinking about them when, of course you are too.

Offer assistance: Now I do not have children, but I can’t imagine if I did how much a helping hand would be appreciated. I say that not only to people with children, but people going through grief in general. It’s exhausting! They probably are not eating or sleeping, so they do not have a lot of energy. Offer to cook or clean or even check the mail. Maybe even say are you sure? I would love to help. Ask again a few days later and I bet they will take you up on it.

Give them a gift: Now I’ve already talked about baked goods. But anything that would be comforting is a great idea. Maybe a few dinners that can be easily heated up. Maybe a stress relief ball. Maybe even a nice gesture like a picture frame with a picture of your friendship. There are a million little things you can add in a small box.

Quotes: You know I love quotes. At least you should know this about me if you have been following me on Instagram for longer than a few days. Write down your favorite quotes for them. Quotes about hope, about life about love. This may just help to lift their spirits a bit. If you or they are religious you can highlight a few of your favorite Bible versus, especially a few about heaven which will add a special touch.

A card: Aren’t cards great? Some just have the words already picked out for you. All you have to do is sign your name. Guess what, that’s okay and it’s a lovely gesture. Just sign the card and put it in the mail.

Set reminders: This may seem odd, but set reminders on your phone. 1 month anniversary, 2 month, 3 month, 6 month, etc. Guess what, that person that lost their loved one may be counting the exact days they have been without them. They definitely remember these anniversaries. No one may reach out. Since James passed away on New Years everyone remembers mine, but after the 2 month mark, most people stopped messaging me each month anniversary. Send them a quick message letting them know you are thinking of them.

Send a message: I shared earlier how I liked getting messages but I didn’t reply to them always. A simple social media message or text message goes a long way. It doesn’t need to be anything long (although it can be), but let them know you are thinking of them.

If you have another way you loved being helped during your time of grief, I would love for you to comment it below.

Thanks for reading! ❤

-Laura Leanne

It’s Year 2 – Now What?

On my Instagram channel, I talk about almost every topic under the sun. What my bad days look like, what a feeling of relief is like, my fitness goals, my travel, my dog. Let’s be honest – you’ve probably read a lot. Why am I pointing this out? I’m trying to go into a little … Continue reading “It’s Year 2 – Now What?”

On my Instagram channel, I talk about almost every topic under the sun. What my bad days look like, what a feeling of relief is like, my fitness goals, my travel, my dog. Let’s be honest – you’ve probably read a lot. Why am I pointing this out? I’m trying to go into a little more detail of where I am at now.

You have probably read all about the phases of grief. You may be able to relate to them. You may be like me and laugh and think, well that didn’t happen at all like that. So, if you have experienced more of a roller coaster, let me tell you, you are not alone. In fact, I think that’s normally how grief actually is.

My husband, James passed away January 1st, 2017. It is now late September 2018 and like I always say, grief is still there smacking me in the face each day. But it sure has changed from this time last year. Let me go into a little bit more detail…

In 2017, a had a lot of a medium to low feelings. A lot of low feelings of course. And the occasional super high. I figured that’s probably all pretty normal and it’s a lot better than feeling terrible all the time. So yes, pat on the back – progress! 2018 has been odd. It’s this understanding of knowing what has happened and figuring out your life. So, I have actually had so many highs. In fact, probably more highs than I used to have because I’m doing so many things that I now enjoy and have learned that I enjoy. With that said, there’s been so many lows too. So, it’s been more highs and lows and only some mediums. Confusing, huh? I agree! In fact, some weeks when I’m really enjoying myself and having a blast it freaks me out because a low must be following soon.

The point of my words today is to give you a little glimpse of what year 2 has looked like in the life of grief. Grief is full of ups and downs. Anyone that is reading this knows that. I had read that year 2 is actually the hardest and I would have to agree and disagree with that all at the same time. It’s hard because it’s reality. I really understand what is going on in my life and any numbing that I felt in 2017 is all gone. Time though has helped. It has helped me to understand how to help myself, what to do when I don’t feel so great. It has helped me to be able to breathe a little easier.

I would love to hear if you experienced the same type of pattern during your year 2 of grief. Please comment it below or send me a message.

Thanks for following along on my journey! ❤

Laura Leanne