This Grief is an Honor. Finding Meaning through Loss.

Every week, our team at Eterneva carefully thumbs through the stories of our customers and the remarkable loved ones they are choosing to honor with a memorial diamond.

It’s like picking a record out of a prized record collection. And, it’s a common occasion for many of us to shed tears when a new heartfelt Eterneva TikTok video launches.

We witness the emotional journeys of our customers who are grieving, and listen to stories of extraordinary people and pets who have lived incredible lives. We recognize that the grief our customers feel is real, valid, and what keeps them close to their loved one.

Our customer Chloe really helped us paint a new perspective on grief when she opened up about her remarkable dog, Muffy.

“She’s brought me joy, laughter, peace, healing… that I didn’t know I had access to. Her companionship, calming presence, and being my little side-kick, everywhere I went, is what I’ll miss most… Rest peacefully, my Muffy Girlie. This Grief is an Honor.”

Chloe A.

Grief is an honor and it deserves to be acknowledged.

Grief is an honor?

Losing a remarkable loved one is never easy. One day they’re here, helping us live our best lives. Then, one day we wake up without them, questioning everything we knew about the world and wondering how to carry on.

We’re left standing without them and all we can do is stand at the shoreline of grief and wait for the waves of anger, depression, anxiety, denial and bargaining to come crashing.

How can losing someone, gone too soon, be anything but awful?

I’ve gone through my share of grief, starting with the loss of my baby cousin when I was five. Yet during the ups and downs of grief, I had never really thought about how grief could be and is an honor to carry.

Now that we’re adults, my cousin and I often talk about the impact Brady (her younger brother) had on our lives. She recently shared with me that she considers losing Brady “the plot twist” or the event that most changed the course of her life, even inspiring her to go into nursing.

Now, as I look at my own experience losing Brady, I can see that losing him as young as I did has crafted me into the unique person I am today. I can see how it was my own plot twist.

Loss and grief helped me to define my values, have compassion for others who are experiencing loss, value life and live it to the fullest, and ultimately find a role in sharing the stories of remarkable people and pets at Eterneva.

I write about grief and remarkable legacies to honor Brady’s life, which was taken too soon. I also ask myself the question “What would Brady do?” to welcome play into my life. I now openly discuss his life with my family, something that was foreign just a few years ago.

Loss is one of the biggest teachers in life. The impact their love had on us and the grief we feel is an honor to hold and carry on.

“When we lose someone we love we must learn not to live without them, but to live with the love they left behind.”

Unknown

So what does it mean for grief to be an honor? When we let ourselves love a person or pet, the loss of their life leaves us with a reflection of how much we truly loved them. When that love can’t be expressed towards that person, we’re left with strong feelings of grief.

“You see, love and grief are two sides of the same precious coin. One does not—and cannot—exist without the other. They are the yin and yang of our lives… Grief is predicated on our capacity to give and receive love. Some people choose not to love and so never grieve. If we allow ourselves the grace that comes with love, however, we must allow ourselves the grace that is required to mourn.”

Alan D. Wolfelt, Ph.D.

When we allow ourselves to feel grief, it can feel like being stuck inside a carwash with no car. Spinning and rinsing and spinning until one day you’re on the other side of the car wash, a little wet behind the ears, holding a brand new perspective, and wondering how to make sense of it all.

“The mourning process can feel like going through a carwash without a car.”

Jodi Livon

Our grief leaves us with a choice. We give into the feelings and spiral out of control, or when we’re ready, we try to make something positive out of an otherwise crappy situation in order to honor their life and continue spreading their love.

Grief deserves to be acknowledged.

In order for us to begin to understand how our grief can be something positive and something we honor, we must get real with what we experience after loss.

Living in isolation and burying ourselves in grief can feel right in the moment, but it may also make it difficult to be seen, which is often exactly what we need as we go through bereavement.

As David Kessler shares in Finding Meaning…

“Grief must be witnessed. Each person’s grief is as unique as their fingerprint. But what everyone has in common is that no matter how they grieve, they share a need for their grief to be witnessed. That doesn’t mean needing someone to try to lessen it or reframe it for them. The need is for someone to be fully present to the magnitude of their loss without trying to point out the silver lining.”

When grief is acknowledged by someone outside of ourselves, we can feel comfortable enough to put down everything that we’ve been carrying, even if it’s for just a few minutes, in order to catch our breath. Just as Trevor Hall sings in his song Put Down What You Are Carrying…

Don’t you go to war with yourself

I heard it come through the rain

Don’t you go to war with yourself

How you gonna hold all that pain

Let go, let go, let go

Put all of it out of your mind

I know, you know, we know

It’s time now

Put down what you are carrying

What is the meaning?

Shortly after my baby cousin Brady passed away I was in the first grade. During a spring party at school I stared down at a Jello egg in my hand and began questioning the meaning of life, religion, and began trying to put meaning to the pain and chaos I was feeling on the inside.

While everyone else was enjoying pizza and cupcakes, I was having a midlife-crisis out-of-body experience, as a six year old. Still to this day, this memory is vivid. I can look back and see myself pausing to ponder while the chaos of a first grade holiday party passed me by.

I’m not sure I found the meaning of life because of this experience, but I can tell you that since this memorable moment, I never stopped asking questions, exploring health, and helping others, all somewhat unknowingly in honor of my baby cousin.

Fast forward decades later and I’m still asking questions and finding meaning through the waves of grief.

Well into adulthood, I’m letting go of the limiting beliefs I developed while navigating loss as a child. I’m learning how to express my emotions in healthy ways that help regulate my nervous system and move me forward in my healing journey. I’m finding ways to help others around me do the same.

Since Brady and I always played together as kids, now whenever I feel a wave of grief, or simply think of him, I invite play into my life as an adult and find something fun to do. Often this is exactly what I need.

Brady’s life inspires me to continue sharing stories of remarkable love and explore topics like grief and finding meaning. Some stories uplift us in awe, others inspire us to be kind and love harder, and some leave us grabbing the tissues, stirring up our own grief to tend to.

Within the chaotic journey of loss, grief is unpredictable, but the desire to honor a remarkable loved one is consistent. Sometimes we need to create space in order to show up to our grief, feel whatever it is we’re feeling, and find something meaningful we can do to honor their life and continue loving.

“Grief is optional in this lifetime. Yes, it’s true. You don’t have to experience grief, but you can only avoid it by avoiding love. Love and grief are inextricably intertwined.”

David Kessler, Finding Meaning: The Sixth Stage of Grief

Finding meaning through grief

Finding meaning out of loss allows us to transform our grief into action while honoring and celebrating a remarkable loved one’s life and legacy.

However, if you’re in the thick of grief, try not to put too much pressure on finding meaning right away. The meaning comes to us when we are present with ourselves and take the space and time to feel all of the emotions of grief.

Finding meaning doesn’t happen overnight. In fact, most of us will find it very challenging, if not impossible, to find meaning when the grief is overwhelming and getting out of bed every day is a challenge.

“People often say, “I don’t know how you’re doing it.” I tell them that I’m not. I’m not deciding to wake up in the morning. I just do. Then I put one foot in front of the other because there’s nothing else to do. Whether I like it or not, my life is continuing, and I have decided to be part of it.”

David Kessler, Finding Meaning: The Sixth Stage of Grief

We must give ourselves permission to take our time and respect what our grief has to teach us. We must also accept that loss is simply part of life. As David Kessler writes…

“Your loss is not a test, a lesson, something to handle, a gift, or a blessing. Loss is simply what happens to you in life. Meaning is what you make happen.”

Finding meaning from loss can be as simple as choosing to get out of bed and go for a walk, knowing that your loved one would want you to go on living without them. Or it could be as complex as writing a book or starting a nonprofit in their name.

Maybe you start searching for meaning by finding an intention or mantra that helps you honor your loved one. A daily intention or mantra can act as an anchor as you navigate the rough waters of grief.

“Beyond a given point man is not helped by more “knowing,” but only by living and doing in a partly self-forgetful way. As Goethe put it, we must plunge into experience and then reflect on the meaning of it. All reflection and no plunging drives us mad; all plunging and no reflection, and we are brutes.”

Ernest Becker, The Denial of Death

Or maybe you decide to start journaling all of the lessons your loved one shared with you in order for inspiration to come to you.

Just remember, one breath at a time. Their love will carry on through you.

Learning from our customers

Just as our customer Chloe has inspired us to consider that grief is an honor, we have other customers who have decided to honor their grief and their remarkable loved ones with a forever memorial diamond.

Their stories remind us to not take a single moment for granted and give us comfort in knowing we’re not the only ones experiencing moving forward after a significant loss.

“Life will never be the same without him but he taught us so much about how precious life is & how to find joy even on the hard days. We hope to live life more like Kam and we miss him more than we ever thought possible. Kamden is & will always be one of a kind, and we will be sure that his legacy will live on forever.”

Erica J.

And there are others that remind us how precious the time we have with our loved ones is and that their love will never leave our sides.

“I couldn’t have asked for a better husband! I’m so thankful for the time I had with him. 9 short years we were together. 8 of them married. I would do anything to get that time back but I have eternity to look forward to with him.”

Crista T.

Then there are folks like Dani who cause us to remember to celebrate the time we shared and in order to not get lost in the grief.

“I still cry about him and wish that he was around. But I think it’s important to celebrate what he brought to our lives and not just focus on the grief of missing him, but more. So I celebrate that, hey, I had 14 years with him. I was so fortunate. We had so much fun together.”

Dani O.

Moving forward with your remarkable loved one

At Eterneva we know, first hand, just how disorienting loss is today. And when you layer that with our modern, always-connected-reality, where loved ones are just a touch away, losing that connection with them is unimaginable.

We believe you shouldn’t have to “move on”, instead you should be able to move forward with your loved one. Our mission is to bring brightness and meaning to loss, and we do that by helping customers turn their remarkable loved ones ashes into a one-of-a-kind diamond that will shine brightly forever. 

Remarkable lives deserve to be honored and celebrated. And those still alive deserve to have a bright path forward as they carry on their legacy. It’s what allows us to move forward with grief, finding meaning amongst the loss, and recognizing that legacies can continue to be carried on in remarkable ways.

If you’d like to learn more about how our diamond growing process works, we invite you to learn more and schedule a time to talk to someone on our team. We can’t wait to hear about your remarkable loved one. 💙

BROWSE BLOG & RESOURCES BY CATEGORY

Featured Articles

Stay Up To Date

Sign up to receive our latest blog posts, grief wellness resources, and featured articles.

Ready to Start the Process?

The $100 Eterneva Welcome Kit contains everything you need to start the journey to memorialize a remarkable life.

Join the grief wellness movement by email or text.