What Helped Me Through the Grieving Process…

In November of 2018, I lost one of my dear friends.

I had been friends with my friend, I will call him, Roy, since the 8th grade.

There was never a romantic relationship, Roy was just always there for me in so many ways.

Roy knew me so well. He knew if I was happy or if he needed to cheer me up, and he always did!

Roy was such a loyal friend. Roy had his own challenges that he talked with me about, and that he was constantly working on. I appreciated that he trusted me as a friend to listen to him and to be there for him as much as I could.

When I got married and had my first two children, he was my biggest cheerleader, always telling me how “proud,” he was of me.

I looked forward to our monthly chats and loved that we could always “pick up where we left off.”

And then,

I got a phone call.

I’ll never forget, I was at a Christmas craft fair, (which Christmas was Roy’s favorite holiday by the way),

And my other friend called to tell me, that Roy had died from some health issues.

woman looking at sunset
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The health issues came quite unexpectedly, I knew Roy had health issues but in no way thought it would take his life.

My heart sunk.

I had two little kids at this craft fair with me and I remember looking around the room feeling like the world was spinning.

I got my kids and I to the car, and drove home, in tears and in shock and so confused.

Is anyone prepared for death of a loved one?


And this news was quite unbearable for me.

Naturally, I went through all the stages of the grieving process: shock, denial, anger, bargaining, and acceptance.

When I was in the “anger” stage I remember being so mad at myself for not calling him one more time. I wanted just one more conversation with him and that was it.

grayscale photography of crying woman
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Well- we all have something we turn to when it comes to grieving, mine has always been writing.

So I wrote this poem one night when I couldn’t sleep, when I was still so sad and upset about the loss of my dear friend Roy.

Perhaps it will bring you peace in your grieving struggles.

I will add, just last night while listening to a song, I randomly burst into tears because it reminded me of my sweet friend Roy.

Grieving never quite stops with our loved ones.

I am grateful to be a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, it has helped me find peace with knowing I will see my dear friend again one day.

I hope all that struggle with grief will find peace. Even more, I hope you find something that can help you through your grieving. Perhaps it’s writing, or running, or organizing, the list goes on but I hope you can find that something that can help you to work through the emotional pain of grief.

And with that, I will leave you with this poem:

When the light Came

When the light came, I was not scared

When the light came, I moved forward.

I saw the beauty, peace, and happiness that

awaited me there, and when the light came I went.

When the light came, I knew my time was finished here on this earth. 

My past family and loved ones surrounded me, and joy encompassed my soul. 

When the light came I knew that I would now be the guardian angel. 

To protect my loved ones and family, and to be with them in their hearts. 

When the light came I was fulfilled and I knew my life was complete.

For now, you see, the light set me free, and I know that is what was meant for me.

So do not mourn or feel heartache and sorrow, for my spirit lives on and on.

My light will now shine for you, and one day too, the light will set you free,

and when the light comes you’ll find me!

Written by: Christy Nielson Austin

November 10th, 2018

In memory of my dearest friend

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