Since your loss, have you ever heard this attempted condolence, “at least he lived a long life?” Or, “at least you didn’t lose a child”. Or, maybe, “you got to spend fifty years together, what about those who newlyweds who died?” Grief is NOT a competition! When my parents died, I experienced the worst pain...

There is no law that requires us to keep holiday traditions the same as we always have. In fact, we are not required to keep holidays at all. It may be too difficult to do the Christmas traditions we did with our precious ones. In fact, I have not decorated my house for Christmas in...

From the time we are children, we fear the unknown. And now, everything in our life seems different, sinister, unknown. It is perfectly normal to feel fear. My beloved used to take care of x, y and z. I don’t even know how to do x, y and z. Now, what am I going to...

You have probably already noticed that grievers and comforters hear with very different ears. I have been astonished at some of the incredibly insensitive things well-meaning comforters have said to me. When I share those things in community, people are often surprised to learn the comment was offensive. On the other hand, in the community...

The word “Depression” has three distinct uses. The most common way we use the word is to mean that we are sad. In overly dramatizing an unpleasant emotion, we may sigh and say, “I am soooo depressed.” No, you are having a bad day. In psychological terms, “Depression” is a medical condition characterized by long...

For me, one of the heaviest weights of grief has been a strong sense of guilt. Couldn’t I…Shouldn’t I have found some way to prevent the accident, some way to save them? Guilt, especially survivor guilt, is often a failure to communicate between our hearts and our minds. Our minds know the truth, that the...

At my first visit with a grief counselor, she said, “One day, you will re-invest in life, but you are not nearly ready to do that.” What did she mean by re-invest in life? When I went to see her, my life was in tatters. I had no plans for a future, nothing I really...

Nothing in your life seems normal right now, does it? There are more questions than answers, more doubts and fears than hopes. Will I ever reach normal again? Well, yes and no. No, the normal you have always known is gone. The plans and dreams you made with your precious one must change. And yes,...

September is Suicide Prevention Awareness Month. So, let us try gently to undertake a difficult topic. Suicide is a threat year-round for those under its influence. I have had several friends strongly consider taking their own lives. They did it not for attention or even because they wanted to die. Suicide attempts are usually a...

Oops, I guess last week’s post foreshadowed this one. I think the answer is yes. I know that I was in no condition of mind or heart to make major decisions other than the absolute essentials for over a year. Sometimes, three years later, I am still not sure I am ready. My grief counselor...