Celebrating events in the midst of Loss, Grief, and Trauma?

Hello Frontliners,

As we are in the middle of June, many things growing up comes to mind: better weather, almost the end of school for so many students, and for many high school students in grade 12 (Ontario) or in Secondary 5 ( Quebec), are graduating. What a feeling, family and friends are rejoiced by the energy, the pride they carry for their kid, and the excitement and anxiety for what is to come after secondary.

Putting into context, imagine at the micro level that you find out a family or friend that you cherish passes away on your graduation or your child’s graduation…would you still celebrate, would you still attend? Now, at a small community level, the impact is much more stronger and emotions and feelings are collective.

I feel at moments I am still not good at balancing my emotions since working in a smaller community. Maybe it is because I know everyone and It is easy to sense the energy at a short distance. However, as we went through many downs in the last month; accidents, to suicide, to death by natural causes, we still had this great graduation approaching for our secondary 5 students.

Despite all of this, community members gave the school the blessing to continue on with graduation. Why?

What I would like to maybe express is that as a frontline, attending my student’s graduation was healing. “Finally something we can all celebrate this event in a positive way.” Seeing accomplishment, seeing perseverance, seeing strength….

I am not saying having the graduation was a way to avoid what I was feeling, but it was a way to restart my heart again, to remind myself of my positive interactions with my students, to remember that my job is both emotional draining yet joyful all in one. In my mind, it is okay to celebrate but that might be how I deal with my own pain.

Front liners or young people that we support; the way we might deal with grief or loss at the moment is different for everybody. It is important that we do not judge nor dictate how one should grieve.

Nonetheless, the question that should be asked is whether the grieving is done in a healthy way? Is there addictions, Is there young people who you identify that might not have the appropriate supports? Are we providing resources in a timely manner? Questions to ponder…

I would like to say thank you all for reading my blogs for the year. I will restart back in August when I return back to work. Do not hesitate to email me at marpirnasar@gmail.com if you have any topic ideas.

Have a safe summer 🙂




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