Meet Me Where I Am, a new film by Grant Garry, explores the topic of grief through individual stories of loss, love, and hope. The film aims to normalize grief in our culture and explores how we can actively participate in helping others through grief. Grant has always been curious about grief, from his first experience when his grandmother died when he was a teenager to his most recent loss, the death of his uncle. Meet Me Where I Am is the culmination of that curiosity, and a dedication to ensuring we all feel better equipped to talk about grief.
Follow Meet Me Where I Am on Instagram to see clips from the film (@meetmewhereiamfilm).
Colin Campbell is a lot of things - writer, husband, friend - but the role he identifies with most is being a father. So, when his two teenage children, Ruby & Hart, were killed by a drunk driver in 2019, Colin was lost and terrified. Who was he without his kids? How would he survive the intensity of grief? Soon after their deaths, well-meaning friends and family would say, "There are no words," but for Colin, this phrase wasn't comforting. It left him feeling more alone because what he really needed were words. Words so he could talk about Ruby & Hart. Words to help articulate his pain. And words from others who shared what they remembered and missed about his children.
Colin's book, Finding the Words: Working Through Profound Loss With Hope and Purpose, outlines the words and actions that helped him stay close to Ruby & Hart while learning to live in a world without them.
Topics in our conversation:
Colin's article in The Atlantic - What Losing My Two Children Taught Me About Grief
When Jessica Schaffer's partner of 25 years, Patrice, died in March of 2021, she found herself untethered. In the early days of grief, Jessica went within, needing to find her orbital pattern in this new solar system without Patrice. During this time she also germinated seeds of creativity. Seeds that were planted by Patrice when she gifted Jessica an iPad, just days before she learned she was dying. In the fall of 2021, Jessica picked up the iPad and started drawing. This process inspired her to start The Chrysalis Imagery, a company where she offers a line of greeting cards and other inspired imagery.
In this conversation we discuss:
Jessica on IG - @thechrysalisimagery and Facebook - @thechrysalisimagery
It's rare for a story to have just one side, especially in grief. This is true for Eddie, whose father died of suicide in 2021. One side of the story is how Eddie's father was in the world - extremely successful and well-regarded. Another side of the story is how he was at home and in his relationship with her. In grief, Eddie has had to reckon with missing her dad while also being confused about why she is missing him. She's also had to navigate living in the world without a dad who was such a force in shaping everything she thought she wanted in life. Eddie is committed to talking openly about grief and mental health and wants to ensure there is room for her and others to tell both sides of the story.
When Tida Beattie's Thai immigrant parents died in 2019, she went from being a long-distance caregiver to an overwhelmed & grieving daughter. In her search for support, she found what so many do, a lack of culturally specific or informed resources. This experience motivated her to change this for others by creating spaces for immigrant families to receive support before and after a death. Tida is a Thai-American end-of-life doula, grief support facilitator, immigrant advocate, and co-founder of MESO, dedicated to supporting caregivers and those in grief with compassion and a cultural lens.
In this episode, we discuss:
The list of things to do when someone dies is long and burdensome. If one of the things on that list was, "return to work," then this episode is for you. If you're a manager or co-worker wondering how to best support someone when they get to that item on the list, this episode is also for you. In a world where most companies provide woefully inadequate, if any, bereavement leave, many people have to return before they are ready, and when they do go back they are usually met with awkward comments or outright silence. Margo Fowkes, founder of Salt Water, an online community for grief, published her book, Leading Through Loss - How to Navigate Grief at Work, with the hope of easing this transition, both for employees and employers.
We talk about:
Listen to Margo's previous interview on Grief Out Loud. Ep. 172 Living After Your Child's Life Ends.
After her mother died in 2013, Charlene Lam faced the daunting prospect of dealing with all of her belongings. Making decisions about what to keep felt impossible, so Charlene turned to her skills as a gallery curator and asked herself: “If I was to do an exhibition about my mother, which 100 objects would I choose?” This experience transformed Charlene's understanding of how to interact with the objects of people's lives. It also inspired her to create the The Grief Gallery and become a grief coach.
Topics we talk about:
Follow Charlene & The Grief Gallery on Instagram.
We wanted to release this episode at the beginning of the new year, because it hits on a topic we haven’t explored much before – psychic mediumship. It’s something that comes up in our groups at Dougy Center and the people who bring it up usually do so with a lot of trepidation and concern for how others will respond. We figured if it's coming up in our groups, many of you out there might also be curious about this kind of work. Patty Montoya is a psychic medium, energy healer, anticipatory grief coach, Reiki practitioner, and death doula. She came to this work from her personal experience. When she was 18, her younger brother died of leukemia. A few years later, her mother also died, from a fast-moving disease. Patty turned to this work in the hopes of providing others with the support she most needed in her grief.
We get into:
Common misperceptions about psychic mediumship.
What kinds of messages Patty receives and how she translates them.
What to expect in a session.
How she responds to skepticism about her work.
Examples of messages Patty's received from her family members.
How she cares for herself in this work.
Follow Patty on IG & FB