Holly Oxendale | Executive Director | Tides, Inc.
Grief can be lonely. During a time when you feel like no one understands the tornado of emotions whirling around your head, you can’t concentrate, and you may not know how to even verbalize and articulate your feelings, somehow you must pick up the pieces, stay strong for your family and those around you, for yourself, and “move on.” Grief, it can be a lonely, desolate place…but does it need to be?
At Tides, we believe the answer is “no.” Our goal is to spread the word that no one needs to grieve alone after the loss of a loved one. Whether you have lost a parent, sibling, spouse, child, or significant friend or family member, Tides wants you to know you are not alone. We understand the waves of grief and emotion that ebb and flow like the ocean tides.
Grief is natural. It happens to most of us in the span of our lifetime. Some may say it is predictable, while others feel it can sneak up on you at the most surprising and inopportune moments. If you are grieving the death of a loved one and can relate to these feelings, you are not alone. There are others in your community, your neighborhood, or next-door who have been through, or may be currently processing similar feelings. Wouldn’t it be surprising, and maybe even helpful if you were able to connect with them? Listen, share, form a bond and friendship?
Please know this is possible. Tides offers grief support for children and their families who have lost someone dear to them. We help them process their grief through the support of others who find themselves in a similar situation, grieving the death of someone they could not imagine their life without.
Tides hosts a peer grief support program the first and third Thursday of every month, beginning September 19 through May 21. We kick off each program night with a time of socialization during a dinner of pizza and salad. This is followed by group discussions. Children disperse into age appropriate activity groups, while adults are grouped by the type of loss they experienced. All groups are facilitated by our exceptional volunteers who can relate to you and your child. At the end of the evening, we join back together to reflect and share insights from the night.
While our Tides meetings are the core of our organization, we also provide support when a death immediately impacts a large group. In addition, we educate groups on grief and the effect it has on children and adults. Due to the generosity of donors, all support services provided by Tides are free-of-charge.
If you are seeking support, or want to learn more about Tides, I encourage you to visit tidesprogram.org. No one needs to grieve alone. Together, we can support and uplift each other during a time of healing.