Self care,  Thinking

Grieving, Believing, And Hope For Humans

Pervasive grief is one of the side effects of the uncontrolled pandemic we currently face. People are trying to stay safe and to make sense of what is going on around them. The sheer numbers are beyond comprehension. So, like many others much of my recent reading and writing has circled back to the process of grieving. Perhaps it is the change of seasons, leading me to focus on the seasons that humans pass through. Or, perhaps, it is that my friends who are steeped in organized religion have been talking and writing about Holy Week. Most likely, though, it’s because a dear friend of mine recently lost a long battle with a non-Covid illness.

She died as she lived —  with grace and good humor. And this wretched disease kept many of us from being able to support her or her family for fear of incapacitating them by passing along this voracious virus.

I am starting to understand the importance of ritual and gathering as a step in the grieving process. And, as I start to try to generalize my experience to that of thousands of others around the world, my heart breaks for them.

But it’s not just funerals. Passover seders and Easter egg hunts. St Patrick’s day parades. Shrimp festival. Birthday parties. Going out for coffee. Volunteer gigs. Baseball. Rituals are designed to ground and connect us. To give us hope. The absence of ritual contributes to the chaos.

I have only questions at this point— the best I can do is open the conversation. (Please add your observations in the comment section below.)

Here is what some others have to offer on the grieving process.

I believe that imagination is stronger than knowledge. That myth is more potent than history. That dreams are more powerful than facts. That hope always triumphs over experience. That laughter is the only cure for grief. And I believe that love is stronger than death. ~ Robert Fulghum

Grief is a process, not a state. ~ Anne Grant

There is no grief like the grief that does not speak. ~ Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

There is no grief like the grief that does not speak Click To Tweet

The five stages – denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance – are a part of the framework that makes up our learning to live with the one we lost. They are tools to help us frame and identify what we may be feeling. But they are not stops on some linear timeline in grief. ~ Elisabeth Kubler-Ross


I come into the peace of wild things who do not tax their lives with forethought of grief… For a time I rest in the grace of the world and am free. ~ Wendell Berry


Grief can’t be shared. Everyone carries it alone. His own burden in his own way. ~ Anne Morrow Lindbergh


Grief can't be shared. Everyone carries it alone. Click To Tweet



  • Lore (like "story") Raymond

    Appreciating your insights reinforced with the many quotes! I am grieving some lost relationships so Kubler’s 5 stages were helpful as I’ve been meaning to look them up.

    There are no words for the loss of your friend. So, a healing hug is attached to these comments for you, Andrea.

  • Barbara Parcells

    We’ve had several deaths that have affected members of my church family, all of them unable to be with their loved ones or say good-bye, or to bury them. I’m coming to realize that maybe we need to find different or new rituals to deal with our grief that don’t need to be so public but more personal for times like these.

  • Ruthie Lewis

    So So true! I realized that most of what I am feeling is the grief so familiar to me! I wrote a blog about it and found I’m not the only one saying this. We are all grieving deeply!

  • Heather Maria

    Sometimes grief is the non acceptance of love. Not remembering the true essence and meaning of the word love can be difficult for humans who chose to incarnate on this earth. When it is time to leave, when it is time to go, when it is time to evolve, it is through the essence of love not grief. If we see love for what it is, we appreciate every single moment in time. We appreciate all that chooses to walk within our path and we choose love.

  • Linda

    The inscription on my tombstone (erected in 1986) says:

    Love is stronger than death.
    Death is stronger than life.
    Though robbed of life, we’re free at last.

  • Zeenat Merchant Syal

    Loss brings with it many levels of grief. After the initial shock has passed I often go to The Kübler-Ross model, or the five stages of grief. It helps. But it takes its time and it has its own process.
    Loving hugs~

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