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After the death of our brother

Olivia spoke with her sister, Kendall about her experience after losing their brother.

“After the death of someone you love, it seems like the only person you want to talk to is that person. 

I felt so alone after losing my brother. I knew I had my family but they were suffering too. Some of the people I thought I could rely on, were nowhere to be found. I was yearning for the company of those who could understand what I was going through; people that could relate to me. I joined the LITT sibling grief group in hopes that it could fill that void just a little. It has been so gratifying to hear other people’s stories as they share their journey as well. This way of sharing with each other has made me aware that my emotions and feelings are “normal” and that everybody experiences grief differently. 

To emote and talk openly about my feelings was very challenging for me. I would write notes to my partner and journal constantly because I was unable to get the words out, verbally. I started to wonder if a piece of me could be more accepting of the ache I felt around the loss of my brother if I spoke about it out loud. LITT’s sibling grief group helped me come out of that “rut.” 

Thankfully, I have found a space where I am encouraged to to express my feelings. It is also helpful to hear others tell of their experience.

I am grateful for the support LITT has given me and am grateful I have an amazing support group to help me along this challenging new normal.” - Kendall Welsh 

Perhaps there is a meaning in each circumstance in our lives. Sometimes I feel like things happen for a reason, but this one baffled me. What could possibly be the “reason” in this? Everything felt so out of whack at first. I could not have possibly imagined finding a silver lining. Maybe it wasn’t a silver lining or a meaning I was looking for, rather a place to feel less alone. When I found the LITT sibling group I knew these people GOT IT. I didn’t have to hold back. I didn’t have to sugar coat. I was able to show up messy, hurting or angry and every single person in that space understood. I showed my cards, I told my truth and no one made me feel like I shouldn’t have done that. 

Nothing feels better than being able to show up unapologetically and that is what LITT has brought me.


Olivia Harrell lives in Baldwin, Maryland, with her husband, two young children, and a Bulldog named Lola. She lost her brother, Griffin, to an accidental overdose from Fentanyl on September 25, 2023. Her monthly blog examines the twists and turns of grief and healing. Olivia loves to spend time with her family, make sourdough from scratch, and exercise. She is also incredibly thankful for the community of LITT and invites others with a similar loss to participate in LITT’s Sibling Support Group. For more information click here.

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