updated 08/25/2015 AT 8:16 PM ET
•originally published 09/22/2013 AT 2:00 PM ET
“I think that grieving comes in waves,” she told PEOPLE at the Ciroq-sponsored Variety & Women in Film pre-Emmy event in Beverly Hills, Calif., on Friday. “Every day that I go to work, I walk past his trailer, and every time I look at a call sheet I see that his name is not on there. Every time I do a scene with the kids I realize that he’s not there, so you’re reminded in every moment. It’s hard, and it feels like such a waste.”
But while Lynch admits “it’s tough” as she and her castmates continue to mourn the 31-year-old – who died from a lethal combination of heroin and alcohol this past July – her heart goes out to his girlfriend and costar, Lea Michele.
“I know it’s just been brutal for her,” Lynch said at the Gallo Family Vineyards and Ciroq-sponsored event. “I never lost a boyfriend when I was 26 years old. I can’t tell her what her experience is. She’s a champion, and she is a rock star, and she is getting through this.”
The Fox show is set to pay tribute to Monteith, who played Finn Hudson, in a special episode airing next month. And after she read the script, Lynch reassured fans on Twitter that it was the “Most beautiful thing.”