We’ve all got stories to tell: funny stories, gut-punching stories, stories that tell us who we are, and allow us to hold on to the people who live with us in memory. All too often, however, those stories are invisible: something we keep hidden, even from ourselves.
We believe it doesn’t have to be that way. We believe that loss can be a powerful a source of connection, rather than isolation: A conversation-starter, instead of a conversation-killer.

From May-August, we invite you to explore the role of loss as part of our common currency—the subject that binds us across socio-economic, cultural, and generational lines—and what it means to live well after loss. 

  1. FIND.
  2. SHARE.

We often stumble over our own stories, pausing awkwardly or gliding over the parts that make us who we are. We explain away key chapters of our lives with a single phrase, or seek to bury those chapters altogether. We reduce complicated people, relationships, and experiences to surface-level abstractions. 

Unraveling those stories allows us to reclaim them: to comprehend the incomprehensible, to integrate them without shame or fear, and to heal. We want to see what happens when we get in touch with those stories.

The prompts below are meant solely as thought-starters. Use them, or create new ones: Do what feels right.

  • How are you different now than you were before?
  • What’s the best lesson you’ve ever been taught—and by whom?
  • Which memory do you wish you could relive?
  • What moment of kindness really meant something to you?
  • Describe a moment you felt most alone. Describe a moment in which you felt held.

It's by discovering others' stories that we come to discover our own. And it's through that process that we discover we're less alone than we might think.

From April-August, we're inviting you to share yours. We'll share those stories on our website and through a series of live events attached to #LossIs. Think of it as The Moth meets Vagina Monologues meets that section of the bookstore featuring grief memoirs.

We encourage reflections and submissions from those whose experiences are frequently made invisible, whether the product of death and dying, incarceration, mental illness, pregnancy loss, or grief that is historical and collective in nature. We invite you to explore not just the past tense, but the present: how those experiences have left you changed, in ways that are permanent and ways that are constantly evolving, and the meaning of moving forward, rather than moving on. Our only rule: Abstain from bullshit.

Together, let's bust the myth that there's a right way, or a wrong way, or a normal way to navigate life after loss, and create a space for #realtalk, online and off.  Whaddaya say? 

“Six-word stories” have been used to capture everything from personal memoir to thoughts and observations about race. So: Your experiences of loss and life after in six words. Ready. Go.
Max: 500 words (shorter = better)
Other ways to share:
Send all files to lossis@thedinnerparty.org or share via Dropbox.

Finally, we invite you to make the most of the dinner table, by chucking the taboo and sitting down for a meaningful conversation about what #LossIs to you. Let’s put it all out on the table, plate up our favorite foods, and dig in.

One summer. One hundred dinners. Will one of them be yours? Ready go. 

Name *
Who's on the invite list?
Give some thought to folks who you know who've each experienced some form of loss, whether the product of death and dying, incarceration, mental illness, pregnancy loss, divorce, loss that's collective and historic in nature--you name it. The guest list is totally up to you: It could include friends, family, co-workers, folks you met through a hospice program, or members of your same community, however you define it.