Anger: After the Death of a Child 3 Comments

There are a multitude of emotions that set in after the death of a child. I experienced all of them, but one really stands out to me: Anger. The word alone provides many thoughts and images. But for many men, anger is the one emotion society allows us to have without too much “judgment”. It’s what men do, right? We get angry. Unfortunately, for many grieving dads, they get stuck there because society is uncomfortable with a grown man expressing his sadness openly. Therefore, this anger begins to fester over time and manifests itself into physical and psychological issues…

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Grief Has its Own Timetable No Comments

After the death of someone we love our grief experience and overall healing has everything to do with our relationship to the deceased, the intensity and depth of the love we felt for them and our degree of faith in a hereafter. In the immediate aftermath of a person’s death, it’s hard to breathe and everything hurts. We feel shattered, bewildered and frightened. Sometimes, however, grief shows us its own timetable and can be delayed or complicated. I experienced a long delay in time sequence when my father died. I was thirteen years old; it was the springtime of my life…

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The “I Didn’t Realize It Was That Long Ago” Response to Your Grief No Comments

Grief throws off your timing. After a loved one dies you may go backwards in time and be overcome with memories. Then the opposite happens. You look ahead and wonder how you will survive. Every day you think of your loved one. Indeed, you may feel stuck in grief. The sixth anniversary of my daughter’s death was in late February. I wasn’t prepared for the tears or a friend’s reaction.When I mentioned the anniversary she replied, “I didn’t realize it was that long ago.” Six years didn’t feel long to me…

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Finding My Deceased Daughter’s Purse: Grieving Again No Comments

The lower level of our house gets lots of use, especially in the winter time. We watch television there and work in our home office. Fourteen years ago we had new carpet installed and it had become worn and dirty. “Sorry, I can’t get it any cleaner,” the cleaning man said, and I believed him. It was time to install new carpet again. Before the crew arrived we had to clear out closets and cull legal papers. In 2007 four family members died and we took in items from three estates. My husband was managing these estates…

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A Skeptic’s Journey Through Grief No Comments

As a physician with a strong science background, I used to regard all things spiritual with a jaded eye—until the recent suicide of my young son, Erik. Since then, my life has been cleaved into two parts: The Before and The After, The Bliss and The Dark Despair. Everyone deals with grief differently. I heal best by journaling my thoughts in a way that helps others. So once I was able to wipe away my tears and crawl out of bed, I began to write a blog: www.channelingerik.com. At first, I shared my grief, pouring my broken heart onto every page. I thought my son…

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Does Staying Busy Get You Through Grief or Lead to Avoidance? No Comments

Several days after my daughter died from the injuries she received in a car crash, I received call from a friend. She told me her son had died in a car crash when he was 17 years old, something I didn’t know. Her call and advice to “stay busy” touched my heart. Since I had experienced loss before, I understood the advice, but it makes grief counselors cringe. Becoming too busy can turn into grief avoidance. When my friend called I had no inkling that two more family members would die. I didn’t know I would find a way to “stay busy.”…

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Healing Your Broken Heart No Comments

As I read about the grieving process, I noticed many suggest we should do something nice for someone else. It’s hard to think of reaching out to another person when you feel so broken, but doing so opens our eyes to the fact that there are still good things going on in life and being a part of them will lift us up. It may be a temporary fix, but even a temporary fix feels good. No matter how simple or elaborate it may be, it always works. When you give, you receive. While working on my book, Brittany’s Rose, I had a truly heartwarming experience that I would like to share…

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Reclaiming Personal Power and Painting a New Picture of Your Life No Comments

The other day I came across a rerun of Oprah Winfrey’s television show. Interior designer Nate Berkus was one of her guests. He was there to talk about recovering from loss, something Berkus knows all too well. Five years ago his life partner was killed in the tsunami that wrecked havoc on Thailand. When the date appeared on the calendar, Berkus would have an anniversary reaction and mourn again. In time, however, he came to think of the date as just a number. “I took back the power,” he explained…

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The New Normal: Dr. John Canine Discusses Child and Infant Loss No Comments

John Canine, Ed.D., Ph.D., noted expert and author on grief, is President of Maximum Living Consultants. Maximum Living provides bereavement counseling services to individuals, employers and funeral homes. Dr. Canine is a member of the Tomorrow’s Child Advisory Council and consults with the organization on grief support for families. Tomorrow’s Child/Michigan SIDS is a nationally recognized resource whose broad-based programs are making a major contribution to the welfare of infants, families and professionals…

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Your Beliefs Will Carry You Through No Comments

The day that changed the lives of my family started with my four-year-old granddaughter, Brittany, sneaking in the front door with two pink roses hiding behind her back. When a precious little hand reaches towards you holding something so dear, the warmth and tenderness you feel have no words. Little did we know what effect a pink rose would have on the rest of our lives. The next morning was supposed to be the first day at her new school, but her life changed over night. By morning, she was burning up with fever. My daughter took her to the doctor’s…

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