Where to begin?

When someone in our lives is experiencing grief—whether that be through bereavement, a career transition, a separation or a medical diagnosis—we often find ourselves at a loss for words. Our goal with Hummingbird & Willow is to create some space around these topics in a supportive, empathic way. Everything on this page is merely a suggestion, based on our own lived experiences, to provide some general guidance.

Let's start with you

First thing’s first: there is no “right” way to show up for someone. You are not alone in not knowing what to do and it’s important to practice some empathy and compassion for yourself as well. Here are a few common questions that we’ve found come up when someone we know is grieving: How soon is too soon to reach out? What do I say? How do I get someone’s address to send them something? What can I do?

When to reach out

There is no right time to reach out. Whether you reach out after a few days or wait a few weeks, the space that exists between you and this person is unique to your relationship. That said, we also believe there is no need to rush anything—the opportunity to show you care doesn’t expire after a set amount of time. Go at your own pace, just as they will go at theirs.

What to say

Again, what you say will depend on your relationship with this person and there is no right or wrong answer. Try to think of what you truly want to convey to this person, and don’t worry if it doesn’t come out exactly as planned. Even if you don’t know what to say, sharing that can be a really beautiful gesture and moment of vulnerability—to show you are both human and that, at the end of the day, you’re just there for them.

How to get someone's mailing address

Perhaps you’ve decided you want to send them something, but you’ve realized you don’t have their mailing address. We’ve found that sometimes people in your network are probably thinking the same thing, so it can be helpful to reach out to others who know this person to start circulating the address.


In lieu of sending flowers, a Hummingbird & Willow gift box is a thoughtful alternative. Flowers require upkeep and disposal, which can burden someone who is already experiencing grief. By sending a Humming & Willow gift box, the receiver/griever can take their time to explore the products whenever they are ready. Each box features an assortment of beautiful, high-quality products that help release emotions, ease the mind, and heal the heart.