Stargazing

Sheryl Sandberg’s lessons in grief Facebook post draws praise, tears

In this July 2011 photo, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, left, and her husband, David Goldberg, CEO of SurveyMonkey, arrive for the Allen and Co. Sun Valley Conference in Idaho. Sandberg on Wednesday took to her Facebook page to mark the end of a period of intense mourning following the May 1 death of her husband by saying "I want to choose life and meaning."
In this July 2011 photo, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, left, and her husband, David Goldberg, CEO of SurveyMonkey, arrive for the Allen and Co. Sun Valley Conference in Idaho. Sandberg on Wednesday took to her Facebook page to mark the end of a period of intense mourning following the May 1 death of her husband by saying "I want to choose life and meaning." AP

Learn to ask for help. Be open with others. Celebrate birthdays.

Those are the lessons that Facebook COO and “Lean In” author Sheryl Sandberg shared in a lengthy — and heartbreaking — Facebook post about the recent passing of her husband.

Dave Goldberg, who was CEO of SurveyMonkey, died in an accident May 1 at age 47 from blunt force trauma. He was exercising while on vacation in Mexico.

In the post, Sandberg reflected on how today was end of sheloshim — a 30-day period in the Jewish faith that completes the religious mourning process for a spouse. Sandberg said she has “lived thirty years in these thirty day. I am thirty years sadder. I feel like I am thirty years wiser.”

On learning the importance of asking for help, Sandberg writes: “Until now, I have been the older sister, the COO, the doer and the planner. I did not plan this, and when it happened, I was not capable of doing much of anything. Those closest to me took over.”

On being open: “I told those I work with most closely that they could ask me their honest questions and I would answer. I also said it was okay for them to talk about how they felt.”

On birthdays: “When a friend told me that he hates birthdays and so he was not celebrating his, I looked at him and said through tears, ‘Celebrate your birthday, goddammit. You are lucky to have each one.’”

Many took to Twitter to react and praise Sandberg for her post.

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