If today is a day of underscored grief, if you’re having a difficult time dealing with someone’s death, or if you’re in need of a general positivity grenade – this is for you.

Today is my first Father’s Day without a living father.

When he died in March, I received an outpouring of comments and emails and calls and offers of support, a flood of positive words and energy. These things, coupled with my memorial trip to Denver turned the entire ordeal into a beautiful, life-changing experience. I put together some thoughts on the subject back then, but it was tough to focus – I was still absorbing everything. In the past few months, my mind has often turned to this experience.

Regarding the aforementioned wordflood: there were caring, insightful, warm words that demonstrated how many of you actually read this and pay attention. Honestly, I was surprised; it’s often hard to fully grasp the level on which people relate to each other online, especially as a curator and owner of a blog that’s not always traditionally personal [more thoughts on this later]. Readers -some of whom I’d never exchanged a single word with- reached out, sharing stories of loss: past loss, recent loss, impending loss, their ways of dealing with loss. All these intense, heart-breaking and, seemingly, deeply personal experiences – experiences no one but the experiencer is really expected to relate to. Words ordinarily accepted and thanked for and filed away like old postcards. I half-expected this type of a reaction from myself, but, instead, I held on to these words and together they’ve woven a detailed map of grief and pain and compassion and camaraderie, and, ultimately, love. A palpable reminder of our interconnectivity as a species.

Perception equals reality – if you’re feeling alone or sad -and even if you’re feeling just fine-, I encourage you to think about this interconnectivity and see what happens. It may feel extraordinary, but it isn’t – not really. It’s a notion that some people are not only philosophically, peripherally aware of, but also able to carry within themselves day to day, letting it impact their every action. Perhaps not something I can readily, consistently embody and exude, but, man – those people, I suspect they might be on to something.