Grieving With Those Who Grieve

Flowers at our daughter's gravesite made me appreciative for those who love and care about my family.

They say time heals all wounds. I say “kinda, sorta.” Maybe time softens wounds, but maybe it’s the people around you that take some of the blow for you.

We just got home from a wonderful friend’s funeral. This was a tough funeral for me; perhaps because of the date. Our friend has been dying of cancer. We thought he would be gone a month earlier, but he seemingly waited until the anniversary of our daughter’s death. Five years ago to the day, we sat in the same chapel at our own daughter’s funeral.  

Today’s service was beautiful. There were hundreds of people there; people who had mourned and served and assisted and loved this man and his family. Some of them were the same neighbors who had grieved with us five years earlier. Even this man’s sweet wife offered her condolences to us as we visited at the viewing. She knew. She even said it seemed no accident her husband died the same date our daughter died.

Last week, five years after our daughter died in a motorcycle accident, I had a sorrowful day. I was slightly annoyed with myself. Why couldn’t I hold it together? I had observed this anniversary four times already. Shouldn’t this be easier? Wasn’t I less emotional last year? Still, I found myself lying on my bed, sobbing; trying to muster up the energy to go the cemetery.

My sweet husband finally came in and offered to get us to the cemetery before it got too late. (It closes at dusk.) As we pulled up to our daughter’s gravesite I saw one of my favorite bright yellow vases, full of my favorite home grown flowers. My uncle had beaten us to the cemetery. I broke down again. This time in appreciation for those who love and care about us.

You see, this same uncle sat with me five years earlier, in my living room, and cried with me. He knew. He had lost a young adult daughter in an accident nearly a decade before. At a time like that there are no words. There was from my good uncle a deep knowing and understanding and caring.

I think we all have times we suffer and times we support. Thank you to good people everywhere who soften the difficult times with their generous love and care.

Jennifer Sant is a Utah high school teacher, energy wellness coach mother of five and currently grandmother of ten. Contact her at

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