Alice and Lucy met through Let’s Talk About Loss and have become really good friends. Here, they both share their experience of the meet ups and how their friendship has affected their grief.
How did you find out about Let’s Talk About Loss and what made you want to join a meet up?
Lucy: I was sent an Instagram post from the Let’s Talk About Loss page about 3 months after dad died, it was a poem called 26 written by Bridget Hamilton. It really resonated with me, so I had a look at what support LTAL offered and found the Bristol LTAL Facebook page. Dad died during the pandemic and I was so lonely, I wanted to meet others and know I wasn’t alone in my grief and this was a chance for me to do that from the safety and comfort of my own home.
Alice: A friend linked me an article written by Rachel Wilson in The Guardian which included details for Let’s Talk About Loss. I had never been to a grief group before and really it was my first foot in the door in terms of grief support/ grief community/ grief insta!
How did the first few meet ups feel? How did they affect your grief?
Alice: My first two meet ups were very different to one another. The first one I went to was just me, one other person and a Host. It was intimate and really special. I felt scared and unsure but came away knowing I wanted to come back. My second meet up was about 20+ people and was just overwhelming in a brilliant way to know I wasn’t alone. It was probably this meet up that made me think… ah yes… I want to be a Host.
Lucy: The first few meet ups were amazing, they were sadly all online because of the pandemic but every one of them was so special. Hosts like Alice helped make me feel comfortable to sit and listen, or share and cry, there was no pressure either way. It was the first time I felt completely safe and supported to talk about dad and all the big feelings I was having with no judgement, just support. Every meet up made me feel closer to my dad, taking about him to new people and sharing precious memories.
How did the two of you become friends?
Lucy: Alice was the Host of the Bristol group and pretty much as soon as I met her, I knew I wanted her to be my best friend. She was so warm and comforting, so patient and caring and I just felt so incredibly comfortable with her. I popped her a message after we connected on Instagram following a few meet ups and told her I wanted to be her friend! It was a bit bold of me, but I don’t regret it at all. Our friendship is incredibly unique, and we are there for each other every day, we have already shared so many huge life moments and I know she will be in my life forever.
Alice: Lucy didn’t give me a choice! 😉 We connected online on the Bristol Facebook page and started following each other on socials. I remember as soon as I found Lucy I knew there was something about her that was really special and I loved the idea of having a friend like her. There was just an instant spark/connection. We had chatted a few times and then one morning Luce reached out and said she wanted to be friends. I remember feeling really taken back, and quite flattered! Even though I didn’t know Lucy I thought she was this incredible powerhouse of a woman and I just couldn’t believe she wanted to be my friend and that I had an impact on her. It felt really nice.
How has your friendship benefitted your grief?
Alice: Honestly, I cannot imagine my life with out Lucy and the last 2.5 years without her. We met around a year after Dad died and we just bonded so quickly and that bond has just continued to grow and intensify. Lucy has been there for me, every day, every hour and I just wouldn’t be the person I am with out her now. She has made me believe in myself in a way I could never have believe in myself before. She has given me confidence, hope, security, friendship, love and so much more. Sometimes it’s like she knows me better than I know myself. Having someone who unconditonally supports me and validates me the way Lucy does is magical.
Lucy: Having Alice around has helped in more ways than I can explain, it feels like we have known each-other for years. We celebrate our parents’ anniversaries, going for dinner or sending each other little gifts to remember them. We always hold space for each other to feel any emotion that comes up, anger, sadness, love, happiness, loneliness – we truly travel on the roller-coaster of grief together! I feel like I know Alice’s parents so well and I never got to meet them, I thank them every day for bringing her into this world because she truly is my guardian angel and I don’t know what I would do without her.
How would you describe the impact Let’s Talk About Loss has had on your life?
Lucy: Let’s Talk About Loss has had a HUGE impact on my life. I was so lucky to find it so early on in my grief, it helped me feeling less alone and feeling like I could find my feet in this ‘new normal’ after dad died. It has taught me about my own grief but so much about others too. It has connected me with amazing friends from all over the UK and helped me in helping others too. I am so eternally grateful for Let’s Talk About Loss.
Alice: There is no doubt that Lets Talk About Loss has changed my life beyond recognition. I had spent 6 years grieving my Mum having never had any form of grief support be it professional or peer support groups. Finding Let’s Talk About Loss changed everything, it was a snowball effect that opened me up to this huge world of grief (in the best way possible!) It goes without saying that Luce is one of the best things that has happened to me through LTAL but my ex co-Hosts have become amazing friends too. We call each other the gems of grief… we all believe we’ve been put together for a reason, to look after each other and support. I have met so many other people through LTAL which has just normalised my grief like nothing else. I am so incredibly grateful for Let’s Talk About Loss and tell the world about it.
It’s thanks to our generous supporters that Alice and Lucy met and have formed a friendship. A small donation today can, in the words of Alice, help other’s feel less alone with their grief.