My mother-in-law recently passed away.
It was rather sudden; the funeral was less than 2 weeks after she first went to the hospital, and it was several days in the hospital before we realized the severity of her illness (late-stage inoperable cancer).
We talked to my son (who is 6) about the fact that his grandma was very sick, and that she was going to die. He seemed more focused on supporting and reassuring my wife, who was understandably grieving. He would say things like "I'm okay. I have a picture of Grandma in my room so I'll always remember her, and besides, its not like its my first time dealing with death" (my mother-in-law's boyfriend had passed exactly one year earlier). He frequently would tell my wife how sorry he was that she had to lose her mommy, and then he'd offer hugs.
However, we're seeing signs that he's not dealing with it as well as he may think.
He gets upset a lot more easily than normal, and has 3 crying bouts over relatively trivial incidents (having to interrupt play to leave school at the end of the day, arriving too late to participate in play with one of his friends, etc.) in the past week.
This is pretty unusual for him, and has always coincided with some problem (bullies, changing classes, etc.).
When we asked him about it, he did say he's sad, because he misses Grandma, and every time someone talks about it, it reminds him that she's gone, which makes him upset.
What can we do to help him?