Thank you, Chrissy Teigen, for showing us what grief looks like
Grief is a very personal thing.
Seems like such an obvious statement, but maybe we need reminding right now.
Chrissy Teigen and John Legend lost a baby last week, and then posted about it on social media. "We are shocked and in the kind of deep pain you only hear about, the kind of pain we've never felt before", they said on Instagram.
I applaud Chrissy for speaking out. In publicising her grief, she made it easier for everyday women to do the same. She has normalised a topic that is usually taboo and opened a conversation that could help people deal with their own struggles.
Fellow celebrities reached out. "We're always here for you," commented Kim Kardashian. "We are so deeply sorry," from The Rock. Octavia Spencer, Viola Davis and Selma Blair joined the outpouring of love for the celebrity couple.
Other women thanked Chrissy for being "brave" and "honest".
Then came the negative, revolving around what is and what is not "appropriate" in this situation.
How should you grieve? In public or only in private?
A friend of mine lost her husband this time last year in an accident. She has been raising three young boys on her own, with the help of a tribe of friends. We catch up now and again but mostly I have been following the ups and downs on her social media. It's heartbreaking to watch, but sharing her grief has helped her find some solace. It has certainly helped us understand when she is really doing it tough and when to reach out.
In some ways, we are all grieving right now. It might be the loss of life, perhaps the loss of livelihood or even the loss of liberty.
All the problems we had before are now coated in an extra layer of uncertainty and sadness. It's heavy stuff, and sharing the load might just help.
October is Mental Health Month. It really feels like it should Mental Health Year. If you need an excuse to reach out to someone or share your troubles, now is the time.
We share the momentous, happy moments in our lives, so it's good to share the heartache, too.
As for my friend, she shared a quote the other day from the author L R Knost: "Life is amazing. And then it's awful. And then it's amazing again. And in between the amazing and the awful, it's ordinary and mundane and routine."
Hopefully we all land somewhere in the middle of this messy and beautiful life soon.
Originally published as Thank you, Chrissy Teigen, for showing us what grief looks like