The Face of Grief

Grief walked by me today. It was wearing all white, each pair of eyes holding pain the way only humans can.

The fifty or so humans walking by me wore white shirts that held a picture and a name. Everyone looked up as they passed. At their number, at their unity, at the name they wore on their shirts, the same name they wore on their hearts.

Even the people who didn’t look at them saw them, and I remembered what I too often forget.

That if enough of us walk together the world will look up from what it’s doing and see our raw humanity, how we fall to pieces when we lose, and how it’s possible to lift the body of grief if others help us.

And it’s not to make people who haven’t lost feel bad; it’s to make people who have lost feel free. Free to declare their love in this public and sobering way. Free to speak their pain the way we speak our joy.

Visually, audibly, artistically, humanly.

And I wonder if we can carry our grief together. You and me and all of us who have lost a parent or a partner or a child or a friend. I wonder if we can walk together for the world to see and collectively step up to the platform of life and give grief a voice and a face and a name.

Can we show the world such an authentic and beautiful demonstration of humanity that even the people who don’t look up will see us, will hear us and know that when loss lands at their doorstep, we who have lost will be here to catch them in our widespread arms and hearts.

For a little over a year I’ve been co-creating such a platform for grief. It’s called The Grief Practice: An Anthology of Loss. It’s a project that invites grief to speak its heart, show its scars and beauty marks and rest in community.

I invite you to stand up with me and give grief a voice. If you are interested in sharing your story the details are at TheGriefPractice.com.

Let’s carry our grief together.

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