Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Receiving an Invitation to Enter Into Grief

Before we lost Micah, I was under numerous misconceptions about how we ought to support those in grief. One of these was a misunderstanding about how to best support those in grief in the context of everyday conversation. I incorrectly assumed that any reference to the deceased would trigger certain memories or emotions that he or she had not previously experienced. In reality, a grieving person could tell you that you cannot harm them by discussing the deceased. A grieving person does not “pack away” memories of the deceased into the attic of the mind, and then only bring out these memories when someone else refers to the deceased. Anyone grieving the death of a loved one will tell you that thoughts of their loved one are nearly constantly on their mind.

In our case, we have found that, when a friend or family member is kind enough to converse about Micah, the conversation brings a flood of emotions, not because we have not already been grieving inwardly, but because the conversation provides an outlet to share these emotions. Rather than resulting in unwelcome emotions, sharing memories with us provides us with a welcomed outlet for our emotion.

According to our mentors Pat and Judy Misener, it is incumbent upon us, as the grieving parents, to grant others “permission” to enter into grief. In other words, because friends and family members don’t realize that it actually benefits us to talk about our deceased child, we need to invite them to do so. Whether we initiate conversations surrounding Micah, or even create new traditions or activities to remember Micah, it is good and healthy for us to “invite” others to grieve along with us.

If you know a grieving parent, I encourage you to accept any invitation offered to you to enter into their grief by conversing with them about the deceased loved one.


  1. Cory, this is written so perfectly explaining how Misty and I feel as well. This is why it was so awesome for us to meet with you and Heather last week. It allowed us to grieve with you, and you to grieve with us. Being able to tell you stories of William and share his pictures meant so much to us. I know we dominated much of the conversation, but we would love to hear stories about Micah next time. God's blessings, Todd

  2. Dear Cory & Heather,

    I'm so glad that I finally took the time to look at your blog and your website after receiving the gift package from you. THANK YOU so much for sending that package to us. I'll write more about that later...

    But for now, I want to tell you how sorry I am for your loss of Micah. What a beautiful baby boy. And what a story. The way you are choosing to praise God through your storm is remarkable. Thank you for starting your ministry in honor of sweet Micah.

    May God bless you today. And thanks too for writing out your thoughts. I deeply appreciate that and find it so therapeutic when I write on my own blog.

    Blessings to you, and I hope we can meet you sometime,