Grief is a profoundly difficult experience that most people will have to endure at some point. And while this doesn’t make dealing with grief any easier, it does help to know that you’re not alone in how you feel.
Case in point? These accurate illustrations from artist Mari Andrew. After going through the grieving process when her father died, she focused some of her artwork on the subject to help her heal and connect with others.
”It’s different for everyone, but my personal experience is that grief doesn’t ever go away, but it does change shape and it becomes something you can hold rather than something that overwhelms you ― a part of you, rather than a burden,” Andrew wrote in one of her Instagram captions.
Her point is an important one: Each person processes grief differently and there’s no one “correct” way to mourn. But while people may deal with grief in different ways, that doesn’t mean it doesn’t deserve to be monitored overall. A major loss can cause all kinds of physiological symptoms, and it’s critical to keep tabs on them.
“Some people grieve very hard, very quickly and then move on,” Dan Reidenberg, chair of the American Psychotherapy Association, previously told The Huffington Post. “Some people grieve privately. Some people grieve intermittently. Some people want to sleep a lot, some people want to talk.”
If you’re going through grief at the moment, seek solace in a couple of Andrew’s illustrations below, and check out these tips for handling loss. You’re certainly not carrying the burden by yourself.