Author Topic: Question and insight needed  (Read 4807 times)

CRCmom

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Question and insight needed
« on: March 17, 2007, 05:21:11 PM »
i volunteered myself to do a workshop and panel discussion on grief and loss back in September.  The training is coming up on Friday and I am freaking out because I don't know what to say or how to say it.  It's not just on loss of a child, but on other losses as well.  The two day conference is on Woman and Children and addiction.    I am doing it with two other women.  One of them talked about letting go of the loss and I just really have a problem with that.  Do we let go of the loss, or just learn to cope with it the best way we can?  Any help would be greatly appreciated.  If you have writings or material that I can hand out, that would be helpful too.  Also let me know if I can use what you may say. 

Thanks to you all = my dear friends
Please be praying for me on Friday March 23
LOVE AND GRACE ON THE JOURNEY,
PAULA


Tom

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Re: Question and insight needed
« Reply #1 on: March 17, 2007, 05:32:25 PM »
Hi CRCMom - I think it is a good "teachable moment" to help your friend who thinks that grief is related to "letting go."  Sometimes it is but more often than not we are in the midst of grief and letting it go is not a good metaphor.  A client told me once that he was asked repeatedly by his fiends why he just couldn't let go of the grief that he was dealing with.  He got frustrated and told them in a loud voice, "How can I let go of something I'm swimming in?"  I thought that was a very insightful comment.  In an acute grief it is more like we are swimming in it and trying to keep our head above water. 

Who is your audience?  What do you want them to come away with?  I may be able to help out a bit if you would like.

Tom

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Katie--Adam's Mom

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Re: Question and insight needed
« Reply #2 on: March 17, 2007, 05:54:04 PM »
Paula,

I wish you luck in your presentation and know that you will do well because you KNOW the material in your heart.  I'm so sorry that you do.  As far as "letting go" of our grief, I don't think that we do because grief doesn't "go away".  It is not something that disappears but it is something that evolves.  A parent does not stop missing their child even 50 years after their loss, there is still grief though it is different than in the initial years.  I hate the term "letting go" as it implies to me that I am supposed to stop mourning my child's loss of his life.  That simply is not going to happen as it will always be wrong, will always be an injustice that Adam's life was taken from him.   I will always "hold on" to my son, to his loss of life, to HIS LIFE and to him being a part of my life and thus to my grief because I will always long to have him back.  I think at best I will learn to have a life, some life without him here with me but it will never be the same.  There will always be grief for him, for me, for our past, for our future, for our loss.  I just don't know how one "lets go" of such a significant portion of their lives and of themselves.

I hope that makes some sense and feel free to quote me if it is at all helpful.

Thinking of you and Christian, missing our kids!

Love and hugs,
Katie

Debh

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Re: Question and insight needed
« Reply #3 on: March 17, 2007, 06:12:23 PM »
I don't see how one "let's go" when you love another as we do our child. Because Chad died doesn't mean everything stops and I can let go of him and what has happened. He remains in my heart and mind everyday as my daughters do, I wouldn't go of any of my children. I will love them unconditionally forever there is nothing I need to let go of is how I see it. Love hurts as we all know when our child dies but that love does not stop and we learn to how to live with what we have to live with, its not fair and its wrong but we continue to do what we can to live the life we have and our child doesn't have.

Katie says it very well.

I can relate to Toms post also, I can let go of grief most of the time but I am swimming in sadness that my son died it just shouldn't be this way. I miss my boys.,

Good luck on the presentation, your heart and Christian will help you I am sure.

Love
Deb


Donna

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Re: Question and insight needed
« Reply #4 on: March 17, 2007, 06:55:39 PM »
Dear Paula,

Everyone who has replied has given excellent insight.  It may immensly help the people whom you will be speaking to or with, to hear the novel thought that grief is not something to overcome or "let go" of.  Of course there can be destructive things we may indulge in or experience because of our grief, and those should be let go, but there is nothing wrong with grieving for the rest of your life.  Grief and the words recovery, closure, letting go, and other mis-leading terms often get linked together, especially when someone is seeking support or help with their feelings of grief.  Grief itself is not something to overcome or let go of, and I sadly imagine you know that all too well in your heart.  So I believe you will do very well speaking and help somebody when they hear it's okay to grieve for the rest of their lives, there is no shame in it and doesn't need to be fixed.

Jeanneb

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Re: Question and insight needed
« Reply #5 on: March 17, 2007, 07:28:19 PM »
Paula,

I wish  you the best in your seminar.  Boy I sure hate the term "letting go."  Here is how I look at it.  People told me I would have to learn to accept my loss, maybe this is what is being referred to as "letting go" of the loss.

I don't think we can let go or accept what I think is that we learn to accomodate the loss into our lives.  We learn how to walk with our grief.  There is no getting over it or any of those other cliches people like to throw around because they are uncomfortable with the whole idea and process of grief.

Speak from your heart, share your own experience, share some of the horrible things people say to grieving parents thinking they are helping, (their pain is over, they are in a better place, etc.).  Some of these statements not only apply to the loss of a child but to loss in general.

I don't think I have said anything that you don't already know but if you want to use any of this, feel free.

Good Luck,
Jeanne

MelissaCharliesMom

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Re: Question and insight needed
« Reply #6 on: March 17, 2007, 08:26:05 PM »
I think it is important to let others know what is not ok to say and do at times whens omeone loses a child. The situation that occurred here recently with a 17 year old girl losing her entire family (mom dad brother) in a car accident had my phone ringing off the hook and my email on fire. People asking what should we say? what should we do?I am a staunch advocate at our local school due to the way they handled not only the death of my precious Charlie but the other deaths since then and they are slowly coming around.
I think it is hard for someone who has not been in my shoes to understand. A counselor can sit across from me and talk to me about my grief and the words that spew from their mouth are right out of a textbook (I took psychology and grief counseling to coincide with my nursing). I think you should speak directly from the heart. If anyone knows how it feels and what should be said and done...you do. I give you a huge amount of credit for taking such a big step to help others.
Honestly one of the best things I have heard, (I think) came from this site and I believe it was John (Danielle Maries Dad) that said it...."Time doesnt heal all wounds. Time does nothing but pass." And I think for those of us who have been forced to bury a child this is so very true. I wish you luck and am sure you will do fine.
And as far as "letting go", its just another dumb thing people say...people who dont know how it feels to bury a child. You never let go of the pain, loss, shock. You never let go of the love, memories, hopes and dreams you had for your child. Its not about letting go its about moving forward and doing the best you can...nothing less nothing more.
« Last Edit: March 17, 2007, 08:30:13 PM by MelissaCharliesMom »

Lonnie

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Re: Question and insight needed
« Reply #7 on: March 18, 2007, 02:42:27 AM »
Wow-I was particularly struck by the phrase "we learn to accommodate the loss into our lives". That is so true. We go on living, but someone we love does not. And because of this, we will never, ever be the same. It's like learning to live with a wound that never completely heals. We are always  aware of it, though it is hidden beneath a bandage of sorts. But it aches, and certain things we do seem to aggravate the wound. And just when the scab begins to form, some memory tears the wound open once more, and we cannot pretend that it doesn't hurt. It hurts-terribly. And though we  know that the sun still rises, it doesn't shine as brightly as it once did. There is a bounce missing from our step, and a sparkle absent from our eyes. Even the "good times" are not so good because the world has changed, and we are not the same. Never again will we judge another person's way of grieving, or the length of time it requires. For we know in truth, that our grieving will never really be over. The edges are not as rough at times, but the loss still pierces our soul. We can never be entirely whole again because a part of us is missing. And yet we carry that part inside always. We will never want to completely let go because our lives have become entwined. It is difficult to tell where one begins and the other ends. There is no need to explain that to a mother, a father, or to a grieving spouse. And yet somehow we move forward, but we cannot help but look in the rearview mirror-for all our yesterdays are back there. To leave them completely behind would be to deny their great significance. And so we pack them in the suitcase of our heart where we will treasure them forever. To let go of my loved one would be to let go of myself, for we are one. Now I will try and live life for the two of us. My eyes will drink in all that they would have seen; my laughter and tears will be multiplied, and a hundred times a day I will wish that I could share it all once more. Lonnie (From the Main Board)
« Last Edit: March 18, 2007, 03:00:24 AM by Lonnie »