Grief is one of the hardest things a person can experience in their life. And it is especially hard around the holidays. 

Grief is something that everyone goes through at some point in their life. It is what I consider to be one of the biggest heartbreaks of life. 

The best way to explain grief is an uncontrollable ache for a loved one who has passed away, and it never goes away. 

I have had the displeasure of experiencing grief at a very early age in life. When I was 15 years old, my father passed away from Stage 4 Colon Cancer. 

This was and still is the hardest thing that I have ever had to go through. Nobody expects to lose a parent before they're even old enough to drive. I always thought that there was a specific order that life went. First you lose your pet, then your grandparents and then your parents. By the time you lose your parents, it’s still devastating, but at least you have an idea of what to expect in the aftermath and you would at least be a grown adult by that time.

Obviously, I’ve learned that it doesn’t always pan out that way and death shows no discrimination. Grief is an experience that can happen at any age, sometimes even to young children. I said earlier that it is something that never goes away; while that is true, it does get easier over time. 

The experience I have had with grief is that is comes in waves. In the beginning, it hurts constantly, but over time it starts to not hurt as much. 

Every now and then I’m reminded of my dad when I’m watching something on TV that makes me think of him or when I hear a song that he liked. It’ll always hurt, but as time passes, you’re not reminded of that pain every day like you are in the beginning.

Unfortunately there is no way to speed up the grieving process. You have to go through all the stages. A lot of times people think that the stages of grief are linear, but they’re not. It’s my belief that you can move backward and forward at any point in the grieving process because the process never really ends, it only gets easier over time. 

If you’ve recently lost a loved one, I want you to remember that it does get easier. You just have to give it time. I also want to say don’t be ashamed of your grief. Everyone has the right to grieve in their own way and for however long.

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