I hear the hurt in your voice as I speak to you on the phone, telling me your devastating news. My heart shatters, and I think—how could this be? Why has this happened? I want to take away your pain and throw my arms around you. I want to carry you through these murky waters.

But I can’t. I can help—I can support and love and pray and bring you food and offer assistance. But you must grieve. You must work through your feelings internally as well as externally, with your partner. And you will. You two are strong. You two are perfect for each other. You two will get through this.

But it will take time. Time and pain and healing and love.

If you need someone to sit with you and your sadness, tell me. I will be there.

If you need everyone you know to give you space to grieve, tell me. I’ll spread the word.

If you need someone to find you a support group, tell me. I’ll do the research.

If you want to talk to a therapist, tell me. I’ll make an appointment for you.

If you need groceries but don’t want to leave the house, tell me. I’ll go for you, or I’ll order them.

If you need to take your mind off things, tell me. I’ll give you great TV or movie recommendations.

If you need to get out of the house, tell me. I’ll book you a massage or I’ll take you to a play.

I will try to anticipate what you need and I’ll do anything you want. Anything to help.

But you might just want space. And that’s okay. That’s more than okay. I know that that’s probably what I would want, too. This is a terrible, heartbreaking, unbearable situation and you might need some breathing room. I won’t push through that, but I will keep texting to check in.

Because I just want to make sure you know I am here. I just want to make sure you know that I’m thinking of you. I just want to make sure you know you are not alone.

And just know that I’m here the second you ask for help.

I wish I could take away your pain. Or give you the reasoning behind why this happened. But the truth is—no one really knows why this happens to some people and not others, so it’s hard to make sense of any of this. And maybe now is not the time for understanding, anyway, maybe now is just the time to get through it—as best you can.

So put yourself and your partner first right now. Do whatever you need to do. Skip out on events you don’t want to go to. Take a lot of time off from work. Don’t take a lot of time off from work if you want a distraction. Go out with friends. Stay in a be a hermit for a while. Scream. Cry. Punch pillows. Do yoga. Meditate. Pray. Journal. Do what you need to do to process and feel and grieve. There's no 'right' way to do this.

Don’t worry about what other people might think. Or what other people would do. Or what other people have to say.

This time right now is solely about you, your partner, and your heartache. The world is going to continue moving—even though yours has stopped right in its tracks. But that doesn’t make your pain any easier or the heavy weight on your heart any lighter. It might even feel like watching everyone move on with their lives makes things a bit harder for you.

You see their Facebook vacation pictures, and their nights out on their Instagram stories. You may hear about the way their toddler is wearing on their last nerve or how they have “so much to do today!” And while your body aches in pain and your soul is filled with sadness, you may feel like your pain is invisible to them.

But its not. We still remember, but we just may not know exactly what to do.

And, so, remember—it’s okay to reach out to me. At any time. Days after, months after, years after. It’s okay to say, “Hey, I know you have your own life and your own stuff—but I need you right now.”

Because it’s okay to need help.

It’s okay to let people in.

It’s okay to be vulnerable.

I know it’s not easy—not even close—but it is okay.

I am here when you need me, my friend. I cry with you, I hurt with you—and my heart breaks for you.

Together, we will get you through this.

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