Tuesday, 31 January 2017

Grief Has A Face

I bumped into a colleague yesterday. I saw her while she was out shopping.
She looked as she felt.
Grief stricken.
The word sadness cannot suitably explain someone experiencing grief. I think there is a hollowness about the emotion that shows on the face, an empty faraway look who some can describe  as being haunted or empty. Whatever it is, I saw it on my friend's face yesterday and was moved terribly by it.
She cried as soon as I looked at her .
A sympathetic look is sometimes the worst thing you can offer up when someone is hanging on to their emotions with their fingernails but you have to offer it, ignoring  the " elephant in the room" is worse.






32 comments:

  1. I am sorry to say I know exactly what you mean. And yes, definitely, sympathy or kindness is often the undoing of a person in the throes of grief.

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  2. I did think of you when I wrote this

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  3. It's an awful feeling when you want to ease someone's pain and you know that there is nothing you can do or say at the time to help. But each look of sympathy and kind word are banked up somewhere in the depths of the grievers mind and it does help.

    Saying the wrong thing though can also stay in the persons mind and is much harder to bear or forget. Best to give a sympathetic look, a touch on the arm and an offer of any help needed.

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  4. When I saw Celine Dion's face as she walked into the church to attend her husband's funeral, that was a face etched in grief.

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  5. That picture is so powerful John... Have you ever been brought to your knees by grief... I have... and it felt just like i was carrying all those rocks..

    A work friend Leo.. went to Louisiana with his wife to bury his mom... while there his wife had a heartattack and died ... I think one of the hardest thing for him to do was come back to work and face everyone's sympathy ... I know it would have been for me......Hugs! deb

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    1. Deb, to answer your question...no I have not.....how lucky to be 54 and able to say that

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  6. Grief is as heavy as the stones held in by wire mesh. Grief weighs more than the stricken man.
    Give comfort.

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  7. Sometimes just being there with a grief-stricken person is all that's needed.

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  8. I hope you gave her a big bear hug and a beardie smacker on her cheek.

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  9. You are so right - never do nothing. A sympathetic word, look or touch is so important. Kindness is a powerful thing. My heart goes out to your friend. Grief has its own kind of pain - about a 20 on the Richter scale.

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  10. Kindness is the thing that allows us to release some of the pain.

    I will never forget the simple kindnesses I experienced during the years my father was ill and while he was dying, and after his death. A few words of sympathy, a hug, a card with a sincere message - they all helped.

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  11. That is a powerful piece of art, by the way.

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  12. Yes but sometimes in such a situation it is good to cry and people expressing support and/or sympathy may appear to make things worse but believe me (I have been there) the worst thing of all is for people to ignore it - and even cross the road to avoid having to say anything.

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    1. I know that happens pat but I can't believe it

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  13. I am in grief over my husband's death and when people are kind I cry a bit. It is a response to people showing they care, and the tears are perhaps healthy tears. When some young men came to my house to offer to fix our jungle of a back yard for free in honor of Will, I cried. That is touching art work, I must add.

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    1. What a lovely and practical moment of support thank you for sharing

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  14. I have had that look and have seen it in others. Awful. The stone and wire form is a perfect illustration of that feeling.

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  15. Proper grief is not something I have really experienced. I suppose I will one day and I am not looking forward to it. There must be a terrible sense of loneliness but worse, who do chat about the day to day stuff with? That is the tiny little things in life that no one else would be at all interested in.

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  16. What a wonderful piece of art! Yes, grief is a hollow feeling for me too. I recall driving down the main road and wondering how the rest of the people could be just normal when I felt the world had ended. I found knowing someone understands and gives you permission to grieve is a great gift - pretending all is well with the person just further deep-freezes the pain and isolation.

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    1. Yes it's incredibly powerful

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  17. I have felt like that sculpture only once in my life.

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  18. Powerful. So very, very powerful.
    And speaking as someone who has had those tears spring forth when someone I cared for and felt cared by simply looked at me, I can only tell you that for me those tears, that look, was a huge relief to my frozen soul.

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  19. https://qz.com/672131/a-sculpture-that-perfectly-captures-the-weight-of-grief/

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  20. Our parents died 10 days apart in 2005. I have been caring for my mentally challenged sister since then. I would love a day to just fall on my knees and weep, holding it together for someone who expects you to be their strength is so difficult. But i cant let her worry about me. Yes i know the grief and if another person tells me i have earned my place in heaven i will scream.thanks for listening

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  21. Our parents died 10 days apart in 2005. I have been caring for my mentally challenged sister since then. I would love a day to just fall on my knees and weep, holding it together for someone who expects you to be their strength is so difficult. But i cant let her worry about me. Yes i know the grief and if another person tells me i have earned my place in heaven i will scream.thanks for listening

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  22. We are attending the funeral of the 19 year old daughter of friends of ours this Saturday. She died inexplicably in her sleep. There's nothing that can be said to comfort them or ease their horrible pain, just hugs I think. I'm dreading the whole experience. -Jenn

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  23. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  24. Spot on . . .
    and oh my . . . so is the sculpture!

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