Now that I understand that grief, emotionally speaking, is the same as gold… I do not despair that we are all of us born to grieve.

Alice Walker

Can there be anything called ‘good’ grief especially when it follows from the death of a child?

Surely grief is that most abject of conditions in which you are thrown into an endless darkness, where despair overcomes hope, and longing for the loved one lost is a pain beyond endurance? How can this be good?

We are Jane Harris and Jimmy Edmonds and we have created THE GOOD GRIEF PROJECT in order to share our experience of grief and to help others to find an active and creative response to the expression of their grief.

Our son Josh died in a road accident in Vietnam in 2011 while he was on a six month tour of the Far East. He was 22.

Our family suffered what many have described the worst loss of all, the death of a child.

Some see grief as a passing phase – a moment in which the trauma of loss recedes into time and that the emptiness of one’s heart gradually heals. New events and new memories will, they say, overwrite those of the one we loved and the history that s/he inhabited.

Is that normal?

Is that what we call a good grief?

Or is grief, especially the grief for a child, something more akin to a state of being, changing over time, but a new condition, a new narrative if you like, that we will live with for the rest of our lives.

THE GOOD GRIEF PROJECT is our way of addressing this.

The project is based on ideas that flow from the concept of ‘continuing bonds’, of not wanting to cut off from the deceased, but of building a new kind of relationship with your child.

We cannot bring our child back but neither do we want to shy away from the pain of our loss – to do so is to deny the feelings and the very life forces that sustain our humanity.

Our films and photography projects reflect this but we also want to help you to find your own way of expressing the grief you have for your child.

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