Beyond Emotional First Aid

The Grieving Pin

…because grieving isn’t just a day, a week, a month, or a year
By Heather Taylor, CEO “After A Loss” | April 4, 2019

Grieving PinThere was a time when grieving was something displayed publicly. People wore black armbands or dressed entirely in black to signify that they had lost someone close to them. The intent was known and understood. No words were needed.

Grief has become something more private and largely invisible. The temporary roadside memorial and the black elastic bands on first responder and law enforcement badges are the only outward signs of grief common today.

During a recent suicide loss support group meeting the subject of something to symbolize the continuing grief that victims are experiencing was discussed. One mom spoke up and said “I want it (a pin) to say what it is… I’m GRIEVING.” She referenced that when we see the pink ribbon, we know someone is fighting or supporting someone that has breast cancer. She also wanted there to be no time limit on when and where the pin could be worn. The Grieving Pin concept answered the needs. The grieving process is very different for each person. Grief isn’t just a day, a week, a month or a year.

Counselors note that losses experienced take time to adjust to and absorb. There are some days when grief feels overwhelming and even ordinary daily activities can seem impossible to accomplish. Special days and anniversaries can bring the pain crashing back to the surface.

The black enamel Grieving Pin offers a subtle way of communicating to others that today is a day when someone is felling a loss particularly acutely. It represents an invitation to gentle interactions and respectful support. On a day when ordinary tasks may perhaps be difficult, the pin invites compassion, patience and understanding as individuals walk the difficult path of grieving.

Heather Taylor
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