I cannot bring myself to say her name.

Just the thought of you can cause my heart to jump out of my chest.  I miss you so much.

Grief can evoke various distinctive emotions in us, most of which we, as humans, are unfamiliar with.  The trigger can even simply be their name.  

I will forever thank Uncle Lou, Austin’s father.  He helped us with this on the very first day after his death.  I am not sure if it was out of fear that we might forget him, or if this just seemed natural to him.  He used Austin’s name often.  And we all followed suit.

If as a griever, you cannot say their name, trust us—as friends and family, we will not feel comfortable saying their name either.

This may sound very simple, but it is something you will have to practice.  You will have to start slow.  Start by saying their name quietly in your head.  This will evoke emotions in you.  Feel them.  Cry if you must.  

Try to say their name out loud at least once a day.  The emotions that follow will suck.  This is ok.  Lean into this and feel the pain.

Grieving is a process that most of us are unfamiliar with.  Grief is a subject that is the least talked about.  When we come upon a major loss, it seems natural to some of us to avoid the pain and believe that time will help us get through it.  It is actually the opposite.  Friends, we have to feel it to heal it.  We have to feel and experience every emotion that comes with this experience—even the ugly ones.