Illuminating Grief: Being Kind to Our Souls & Creating Light from Loss

Post by Beryl Ayn Young.

Illuminating Grief: Being Kind to Our Souls and Creating Light from Loss

There is this mindset in our culture that grief is the evil step child of emotion.

Something we must tuck away, hide, and stow away. Plaster a smile all over our face and pretend we’re fine and not upset about losing our loved ones: friends, parents, siblings, aunts, uncles, cousins, children.

When I talk about my own daughter who never breathed a minute on this earth, I can immediately feel a shift in the air. It goes stale, and uncomfortable, and rotten.

Apparently grief is even more taboo when it’s 4 years later and you’re still talking about losing a baby you never met, because you gave birth to her when you were 20 weeks pregnant. The idea that you’re mourning the loss of someone you never knew seems absurd, especially when it’s taking so long to ‘get over it’.

But you don’t get over it.

Just like you don’t get over losing your beloved mom, dear dad, favorite grandparent, sweetest sister, big brother, best friend, etc….

I know, I’ve seen the glazed eyes and confused voices of clients, and friends, and even family who aren’t sure how to react when I utter her name like Bella’s still here with us.

But she is.

She’ll always hold a special place in my heart. And she’s with me each time I see a beautiful sunrise, or a butterfly flutters by my window, or a rose blooms out in our garden.

I need the world to know and to understand that only way I survive is by making memories of the daughter I wanted more than anything.

When my body stopped creating her, that was the minute I started creating her legacy.

Bella’s legacy, the one I’m most proud of, is a free 4-week e-course Illuminate: Lighting the Path to Photographic Healing. I retired the guided version of the class this Spring and it’s now a completely free self-study course because anyone who is hurting deserves the tools to seek creative healing through photography.

Even though I created Illuminate with moms who have lost children in mind, the tools and lessons taught in Illuminate would benefit anyone who is experiencing loss.

You can join me if you’d like right HERE.

If you’re struggling with loss, any loss, I encourage you to be gentle with yourself and your emotions, give yourself the space and time to cry and mourn and be sad, and enjoy collecting the memories of your loved one that will make you smile in time.

Beryl Ayn Young believes that there is magic hidden inside a camera, and she’s here to help moms discover it. She is a professional photographer by chance and a teacher to the core who discovered healing behind the lens after the loss of her first daughter when 20 weeks pregnant. Now a mom to a healthy, happy toddler daughter Beryl blogs and shares her love of motherhood, Chipotle’s guacamole, TOMs shoes, and of course photography. She teaches photography classes designed with moms in mind both locally and online. Learn more about her offerings at

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