Grief was a big part of my thought process over the last few days. A dear friend of mine experienced a trauma that I can not even begin to understand. She lost something so precious that it will change her forever. Honestly, I think it will change me too. At the very least, it has effected the way I express gratitude for even the smallest things. What has struck me this week, though, is how grief is different in every situation. As a counselor, I’ve been trained on how to counsel someone dealing with grief and I’ve put that training into practice with my clients. I’ve experienced it firsthand and learned a lot about myself, my faith and my God. But each time, it’s different. The way I react physically varies. The way I react emotionally varies from stoic to sobbing. As I experience grief alongside my sweet friend, I’m well aware of the fact that I don’t have it all figured out. The fact that I’m a counselor does not mean that I know how to help her move forward. What I do know how to do is be supportive. I know how to call her, text her, and sit quietly with her. I know how to pray for her, make her dinner and offer to clean her bathroom. I don’t know the perfect formula to move forward through grief. I just know how to love her. It’s the same way I love myself during hard times and the same way I love my clients as I bear witness to their growth. Grief is painful, no matter what the circumstances. Unwavering support is the only way I know how to grieve with someone. That’s my job as a friend and as a counselor. That’s what this week has taught me.