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Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. How to handle grief.

Updated: Sep 12, 2022

What a lady she was.

Obviously I am going to pay tribute to one of the most influential people in our lives.

I have experienced close to forty years of life and there has been very few constants within that time period. Her Majesty was one of them. There is not a single man or woman in the military today that has served anyone but this Queen, and I for one am very proud to have done so.

The news over the last few days has been both shocking and inspiring when including the accession of the new King Charles the III. I wonder if there has ever been a more poignant moment in any service persons life outside of conflict.

Why is it such a moment for the military families?

One thing that occurred to me while watching and listening to the constant coverage of the late monarch, and the proceedings that followed, is why this will mean so much to so many. Even in our own lives and families we see matriarchs and patriarchs pass, and this is often very hard to process. We reflect on how they have impacted our lives and how they have influenced us. We look at what joy or sadness they brought to us over the years, and we discuss those times. This time however we have been exposed to this family, and this matriarch, almost every single day of our lives.

Every penny you have spent, every letter you have posted or received, and every time you have been in or out of yours, or your partners military work place, you will have seen an image or representation of the Monarch.

It is with little surprise that we have all felt a loss. I for one have been deeply saddened by the events of the last few days and already feel a large amount of emotion about what is to come. For our younger children they will now know of loss, possibly for the first time in their lives, and it is a wonderful opportunity to help them understand what is happening.

Undoubtedly many of you will be involved in parades and pageantry over the next week or two, and I hope that many units will be able to allow the involvement of the extended family.

As we watch not only the Monarchy, but also a Royal 'Family', move through this period of grief, we are reminded of our own families, losses and growth. Allow your families to embrace what has happened, mourn the loss, and enjoy the triumphs that follow. This will likely stay with them for the rest of their lives. Teach them that we are all vulnerable, but that we are all able to overcome adversity and continue our lives. Loss is a time for grief, and education, always.

Many of us will be busy during this time, when most of our families would like a period of consolidation. Patience and understand are key. Explanation and education are essential.

We are sworn in, we volunteered to serve, we are HM Forces.

God save the King.

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