It's OK That You're Not OK
Updated: Apr 12, 2020
In her book It’s OK That You’re Not OK, Megan Devine is extremely honest and authentic about the realities of grief. As an experienced therapist and creator of the website Refuge in Grief, Devine has a lot of professional experience that has helped her write this book. But the moment in her life that made this book what it is, was when she had to watch her partner pass away in an accidental drowning incident. Devine writes this book from her own personal experience of coping through the depths of this grief. She says “We are living in a society that is afraid to feel”. This hit me hard and is one of the main reasons I want to write, share and talk about this book. People who are going through a horrendous loss should have the resources to understand what they're feeling and why, and have some perspective so they know they are not alone in what they are going through. I imagine it would be hard to pick up the book It’s OK That You’re Not OK when going through a traumatic loss, but I believe giving it a read could possibly help some know that what they are feeling is normal.
Devine talks a lot about how grieving is not something you can or are supposed to just get over and move on from. Society has mapped grief into stages and has shown a time line we’re supposed to be able to follow. We are told we have to go back to our normal life, but the reality is, “Grief is not a problem to be solved; it is an experience to be carried. The work here is to find - and receive - support and comfort that helps you live with your reality. Companionship, not correction, is the way forward” (pg 24). “Grief is part of love. Love for life, love for self, love for others, what you are living, painful as it is, is love. And love is really hard. Excruciating at times” (pg 5). “The truth is, in one way or another, loving each other means losing each other” (pg 7). These are only a few quotes from the start of the book that I found incredibly impactful.
Devine looks at the importance of not trying to go back to your normal, “happy” life. What is a much healthier and realistic approach is learning to build a life alongside your grief instead of trying to overcome it. Devine lets her readers know that several things such as trouble focusing, anger and rage, loss or increase of appetite and more are common reactions to a loss especially in the early stages of grief.
I really recommend this book and please consider giving it a read if you are experiencing a great loss. Her website Refuge in Grief ( https://www.refugeingrief.com/ ) is also a fantastic resource to look into. Thanks for taking the time to read this.