Memorial Day is a time to honor those who have fallen while serving in the country’s armed forces; taking time to remember the sacrifice and courage demonstrated for the protection & well-being of others. “Greater love has no man than to lay down his life for another” speaks to the heart that reinforces these selfless actions. It is this ‘heart’ of those surviving the separation/loss of a loved-one that experiences the heart-ache and gut-wrenching feeling we describe as grief.
The sorrow that we experience when we become separated from someone of significance is called bereavement (which means “to tear apart”). This state of grief is demonstrated through the actions of ‘mourning’. This broken-hearted experience leaves us searching for repair, healing and recovery of what was once connected together; as if grief is a problem to fix.
Grief is not a problem to fix; it was never the problem to begin with. Like pain that sounds the alarm to an insult or wound, grief refocuses the discomfort of separation; creating a desire for reunification and to connect in new and different ways. These memories can remain connected in our hearts and minds, creating hope for an eternal reunion where tears and sorrow are non-existing.
As we journey through our sorrow for those departed, we can identify and honor those who have fallen by ‘laying down part of our own lives’. We can seek to support through compassion those who are grieving. “Compassionate forbearance” is a term that means to “suffer alongside” and to “suffer-long with another.” We can make a sacrifice by reaching out to someone walking in grief through a gift of compassionate forbearance. Wouldn’t you like to be on the receiving end of the type of support?
Rainbow Hospice offers grief support groups at the Inpatient Center (located at that are open to the community. These are open-ended groups available for adults experiencing a loss at any age and for any circumstance. Monday Morning Joe meets from 8:30 -10/a in the dining room on the 1st and 3rd Monday of every month. Journey through Grief meets in the community conference room from 4:00-5p on the 2nd and 4th Thursday of every month. Individual grief, care-giver support and other community grief concerns are services offered upon request. There is never a charge for any of these services. For more information visit www.rainbowhospicecare.org or call 920.674.6255.