ace to face, people didn't seem to know what to say. On Facebook, friends, family, friends of friends, even people we had never known shared their deepest feelings of loss and pain with Emma, on her page, in the same way they had shared their happiness - out loud, in writing, without a care who was reading over their shoulders.
Truth be told, grief makes a lot of people uncomfortable. It's hard to see someone you care about torn up emotionally. It's natural to want to fix them, but that's just not possible. Therefore, the most helpful thing you can do for someone who is hurting is to offer to just be there for them in whatever capacity they need.
The death of two parents spread over such a chasm of time reassures me that I have grown up. had feared the brutal spectacle and harsh rattle of death. I had feared being alone with her at the final judgmental moment of leaving, feared I would abandon her and not offer a last comfort, that split second of reassurance as she left. Yet none of those fears came true.