After suddenly losing her sister in 2020, Australian author, journalist and presenter, Indira Naidoo, shares how she found strength & resilience through grief.
© Danielle Robertson Consulting Pty Ltd t/as DR Care Solutions
“Electrocuting shock” is how journalist and writer Indira Naidoo describes the grief she experienced when her sister took her own life in Melbourne during its first COVID-19 lockdown in May 2020.
“Every part of you is zapped. You completely shut down and enter this autonomous state: basic breathing, heart pumping. The rest of you is in electrocuting shock.”
Defuse through nature
In her recently published book, The Space Between the Stars, she explains how she managed her grief through connecting with nature.
“I took the headphones off and, with everything quiet and still, started to notice things… that our surrounds are so rich with life.”
Indira encourages anyone experiencing grief to seek hope and healing through the simple act of connecting with nature.
Her own sense of solace, warmth and calm came through daily walks and visits to a grand old fig tree by Sydney Harbour and noticing the wondrous resilience of nature as it ekes out life in cracks, rock walls and pavements.
This story is beautifully told in the recent half-hour ABC Compass program, Indira’s Tree. I recommend watching it.
Through comforting others we prepare ourselves
Contained within is wise advice from Sydney-based Specialist Grief Counsellor, Wendy Lui, who suggests that we in society need a broader conversation around grief.
In essence, we all need to learn to sit with people experiencing grief and help bear their pain. This is about being there for them, accompanying them on their journey, and understanding there is no solution or a quick fix to ameliorate the pain. Wendy ends with the advice:
“Any conversation we have on grief [with another experiencing it] is a conversation for ourselves as we ourselves will become grievers in time.”
Last week, I raised the suggestion of a National Grief Strategy for Australia. This statement from Wendy Lui could certainly form part of its mission statement. Namely, by encouraging every Australian to comfort another in grief and educating us on how to comfort, every Australian can better prepare themselves for the grief they will experience in the future.
If you are accompanying someone on their journey of grief, consider downloading our guide on ways to sit with and comfort a grieving loved one or friend.
Guide: Approaches to Comforting a Grieving Loved One or Friend
With our experience in care, we compiled a range of suggested approaches to comforting grieving relatives and friends to help them through that intense grief period.
It's free and easy to download; we invite you to get your copy.
Submit the form below and we'll send it directly to your email address.
Seeking care for a loved one? Please feel free to call me, Danielle Robertson, for an initial discussion on how to set up the right care, support and assistance at the right time and in the right place.
 Sydney Morning Herald Good Weekend, 8 August 2022, page 22
 Naidoo, Indira, "The Space Between the Stars", Murdoch Books, March 2022
 ABC iview Compass Series 36, "Indira's Tree"
 Wendy Lui, Specialist Grief Counsellor
 DR Care Solutions: Urgent Calls for a National Grief Strategy