What happens when you take a year away from your income generating work to focus completely on grief? This is the question Rebecca Feinglos faced at the end of 2021. Grief wasn't new to Rebecca. She was a teenager when her mother died of brain cancer. On the same day her state shut down due to the COVID pandemic, she got a call that her father had died suddenly. In the ensuing months, she ended her marriage. So, by the time she got to the end of 2021, she was exhausted and empty and unwell. It's common to wish the world would stop and give us a break when someone dies, but we usually dream of escaping from it all. Rebecca did something different - she took a year to delve fully into her grief and along the way she wrote about it on her blog. This experience inspired her to start her organization, GrieveLeave, a community to support others in learning to grieve all of their losses.
It's generally accepted that there's no official end point to grief, but what happens when there's also no end point to the questions about someone's death? Charlotte Maya's life changed drastically when she came home from a hike with her two young children to find two police officers and a priest at her house, waiting with news that her husband Sam had died by suicide. In those early days of grief Charlotte dealt with sadness, anger, confusion, and the endless tasks that come when someone dies. She also faced the question, "Why?" Why did Sam do what he did? What was he going through? Why didn't he ask for help? Almost 16 years later, Charlotte and her children have more understanding about suicide, but they've mostly had to accept that they'll never truly know the answer to a question that only Sam could answer.
Charlotte's new memoir, Sushi Tuesdays, chronicles the first few days, weeks, and years of grief and how she learned to take care of her children and herself in their grief.
If you or someone you know is struggling, please reach out for help. You can call the National Crisis Line at 988 or text Hello to the Crisis Text Line at 741741.