Authentic Grief – the reality of life after child* loss
I’m honoured to have you join May ‘We All Heal 2019 – Authentic Grief’, our mindfulness-based conscious way to give your heart and soul the space to focus on grieving and healing.
This is already the 5th time we will be running May We All Heal (MWAH). You can read more about its origin here.
Thank yourself for being here. Even if you’ve been part of MWAH previously, take a few minutes to read about this year’s event, the possible alternatives to choose from and the most important details.
This year’s event theme: Authentic Grief
The theme for MWAH 2019 came out of my ‘ self-care’ year after our last community-written book project Surviving My First Year of Child Loss: Personal Stories from Grieving Parents. Working with clients in my role as a grief recovery therapist, I realised, again and again, the importance of being authentic in your grieving, in order to grieve in a healthy way.
Authentic in the dictionary is described as:
- of undisputed origin and not a copy; genuine
- made or done in the traditional or original way, or in a way that faithfully resembles an original.
- based on facts; accurate or reliable.
- (in existentialist philosophy) relating to or denoting an emotionally appropriate, significant, purposive, and responsible mode of human life.
What is the benefit of being ‘authentic’ in my grief?
There lays a huge power in being authentic about our experience of grief, both in personal healing through the changes we go through when writing, as well as the service we make to the world in letting them know about how it really is. Being authentic uses less energy than, for example, pretending that we are ok when truly we are not. We encourage you to reflect on what ‘authentic grief’ means for you, and how you want to share your experience authentically, no matter what the world around you might think. We are here to support you in this.
NEW – MWAH Mentorship Program
This year for the first time we offer
In summary, the program will…
- your personal copy of the May We All Heal companion book
- guide you through the 31 days prompts with personal emails
- encourage you to start with some pre-event tasks which will support you throughout the program
- offer weekly group sessions (watch them live or on replay)
- give you access to a private MWAH alumni group
Spaces are limited so if you’re interested, sign up now.
The program contains 31 prompts, one for each day in May. This year, we will be using the original prompts from the companion book, so if you haven’t got it yet, go ahead and order it here. The prompts will also be shared on the event page and on MWAH’s IG channel.
You can also choose a more personalised way to embrace grieving and healing for yourself, for example:
- Choose your own prompts, if you feel the ones we suggest do not relate to you or your experience.
- Focus on random acts of loving kindness daily for 31 days, following the prompts.
- Write your child’s name in 31 different ways, embedding the prompt in your reflections.
- Write 31 names of children of your fellow mothers-in-loss. You might like to check out #lovesobig hashtag on Instagram (IG) and Facebook (FB) to get an idea of what this could look like.
Share & Hashtags
Sadly we don’t need a village to raise our child because he or she has died.
Instead, we need a community of like-hearted parents who support us through the mothering/fathering** of our child, the child we won’t get to bring up in real life. Please help spread the word about MWAH. Tell your support group and others you know who might benefit from this. You can do this by sharing the event on Facebook or tagging your friends in IG posts about the project.
Please use the following hashtags when sharing: #MayWeAllHeal and #MWAH2019 and #authenticgrief. This also allows you to find other MWAH participants. Share on your personal IG and FB or on the event page.
If you are looking for a more personalised and guided way to participate in the event, check out our new MWAH Mentorship program here.
Some important details
Let people know what you’re doing
Go the MWAH 2019 event page to find this image ‘Dear Family & Friends’. It’s good to let them know what you are doing and how they can support you.
…I can’t do every day?
Don’t worry about whether you can do this every single day or not. It’s not about how many days you give yourself the time to reflect. It’s about the fact that you do.
…I don’t have the companion book?
You can order a soft or hardcover version in the shop. Alternatively, choose a notebook that fits your needs, with respect to size and the paper quality (preferably without any lines or grids to allow free creative expression).
* ‘Child’ includes baby, babies, child and children, no matter the age or gestation they died.
** Even though this event might appeal more to ‘mothers’ it will support and hopefully appeal similarly to ‘fathers’. Given we are supporting each other through the month of May because of Mother’s day, I might speak more in the female version.