When someone you care about has experienced a death, it can be challenging to know what you can do or say to show your support for them. When you search the internet for ideas, you’ll undoubtedly see plenty of websites offering sympathy gifts, condolence gifts, or sentimental gifts that you can buy. The best gift that you can give to someone that is grieving is not something that money can buy. It is something that only you can share. The single most meaningful gift for a bereaved person is a shared story about the loved one that passed away.
Art has an undeniable ability to touch parts of our hearts that are often locked away and only accessible through our subconscious. Not every piece of art has the keys to unlock the guarded door, and we can’t predict if a sculpture, painting, or song will be the arrow that pierces our soul. Even if you aren’t typically able to understand art, like me, we can still appreciate great art when we see it. During my darkest hour of grieving, after we had lost 5 of our relatives and then had to put our cat of 17 years to sleep, I came across a poem that struck at my core. It simultaneously hurt to read the truth it carried and healed much of the pain I had been enduring up to this point.
The hardest lessons that we learn in life are the ones where we don’t get a second chance to apply the lessons learned. The death of a loved one is one of the most painful experiences that we can survive. In my opinion, the pain comes from the unanswered questions that fill our mind after we realize we lost the opportunity to ask them. The pain comes from realizing that the reconciliation that we have been putting off because of our own pride, can no longer happen. The pain comes from the inability to picture what life without that loved one will look like. If only I had understood the lessons below, I believe that the pain wouldn’t be quite so crushing.