Tuesday, February 25, 2014
Saturday, February 1, 2014
A few weeks ago, different tragedies brought three new members to the grieving mothers club in my very own community. My heart wept for them, knowing the darkness that lay ahead. I was traveling when the devastating news reached me, stuck in an airport waiting for my delayed flight home. A thousand miles away, there was nothing I could do to comfort these mothers as they faced a hell we know well. Instead, I poured my heart out to them in a welcome letter of sorts, a blog entry I titled, The Wailing Tent.
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The Wailing Tent touched a tender nerve in many, and I received kind notes from women around the world. Although we may be strangers from different countries or cultures, inside the tent we all speak the language of an irreplaceable sorrow that others simply do not understand.
While no one would argue that life is full of loss in many forms, the dynamics of losing a child are unique, setting us distinctively apart from all other grievers. One need to spend only a moment on the numerous Facebook groups to grasp the depths of sadness that torments every part of our body, mind, and spirit.
Yet there is only so much that can be shared through written blogs and Facebook posts. Furthermore, reading and writing are one-way dialogues in which many nuances get lost, thus increasing the challenge faced by friends and family as they try to understand. Is there a way we can help them appreciate the never-ending shadows we tackle daily? A way that would also allow us to support each other outside the wailing tent? My brain began to weave through a tapestry of possibilities in search of an answer.
And then it dawned on me. Yes, there is another way to collectively offer each other comfort while helping to raise grief awareness. And I was already doing it, albeit in another form. Recently I began hosting a local radio show as the voice of the small town I lived in. I was learning about the new world of digital media, and…dare I say….enjoying myself. But could I create a radio show, a voice, for grieving mothers? A radio show that would reach all who speak the language of our sisterhood, while helping others to understand our journey? Doubt permeated my thoughts, for who am I but one shattered mother? A permanent griever who puts pen to paper to share my heart’s sorrows with the world on occasion. But the idea of a radio show nagged me, beckoned me, and I continued to wonder “….what if….?”
And then this morning I received yet another heartfelt response to The Wailing Tent, and my thoughts conjured up Albert Einstein, the famed physicist who once said, “Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value.” And my doubt lessened as my determination for my sorrow to be of value grew.
Though the heartfelt language shared within the tent will never be fully understood by those standing outside, sharing our conversation on a public platform will help others better understand our unique journey, why the sadness permeates every facet of our life. And by doing so, we help to raise grief awareness for not just those around us, but for everyone. Who better to help the world understand that grief doesn’t follow a tidy little timeline than those of us who speak the language of the wailing tent? If we offer each other a soft shoulder and warm ear, and work together to raise grief awareness through a radio show, then wouldn’t that be of value to us all?
Please join grieving mothers everywhere for the inaugural episode of GoodGRIEF Talk Show on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 7 pm PDT. Angie Cartwright, founder of National Grief Awareness Day will share her story and then take live calls. For more information, or to listen to the show, please visit www.goodgriefww.com.