Myths Of Child Loss Grief: Time Doesn’t Heal

Originally published in Still Standing Magazine

Time doesn’t heal. It gives you space to find healing. Time can feel like a gift and a thief at the same time. It gives you the opportunity to do the work of filling in some of the gigantic hole left in your heart with peace, yet as it keeps rolling on, it can also feel like it is stealing all that should have been.

I hated when people would tell me to give it time, or when they would say time heals all. Frankly, it isn’t true: time doesn’t heal. I have found healing on this journey, but it wasn’t time that gifted it to me. I had to construct a toolbox, and with time I had a better idea of what tools needed to be in it to survive this. I had to use these tools to relieve the pain, to find peace, to find purpose, and to discover who I was after it all.

It was never one thing, and it still isn’t. Personally, I need to write, I need to see a counselor, I need to see a shaman for energetic healing, and I need to feel connected with God. I found different healing with each, and I am not sure how it would have unfolded if I wasn’t able to use each one. None of these tools can be used by someone else doing the work for me. The workload is completely on the grieving, and not even time can fix it.

No two people will have the exact, same recipe to survive. We are each unique just as our circumstances are all unique, and therefore our needs will all be different. But I do believe we all need a toolbox. Grief is exhausting; working your way through it is equally tough work. Grief has so many layers. Once you find some peace with the loss of your baby, there is a whole other layer of work learning to be okay with all of the secondary losses.

I want to encourage everyone to find their medicine and use it. It could be gardening, running, yoga, crafting, writing, group grief meetings, energetic work, faith, meditation, traditional counselling, or anything else that can lift your vibration and leave you feeling lighter. Listen to your heart and your body—they will tell you what feels right—and then keep doing it. The effects aren’t often immediate; sometimes, you need to sit in the emotions that were brought to the surface and work through them. It is hard work, but you can do it. The hole left may never completely be filled, but peace can fill some of the open space. You can feel lighter, you can welcome joy, and you can still have a lust for life, but it takes work, and we cannot only rely on time to heal.

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