Sunday, August 05, 2007

Grief related links ...

Once upon a time, back when blogs were not on-line journals of various types, a blog was a web log -- a collection of places you had been on the web, things you could recommend. I'm doing that now with a post I just read:

top 5 things not to say at a funeral May 9, 2007

Posted by guinever in loss, heaven, grief, healing, everyday life, death, christianity. trackback

In the two years since my daughter’s death, several people have asked me what they can say to a friend who has just lost a child or another loved one. My answer has always been,

There are truly no words. Just listen. Get your friend talking.

Ask about their loved one. Ask what they miss the most, what they remember. If you have some stories to tell about the person who has just died, tell them. They will grasp onto your memories and cherish them.


“grief is like labor” revisited one year later March 14, 2007

Posted by guinever in loss, grief, healing, christianity. trackback

As the two year anniversary of my daughter’s death quickly approaches, friends and family have been asking me how I’m doing. Some wonder how I will spend March 22–do I want the women to surround me again in prayer at the cemetery followed by brunch at my house like we did last year?

Others ask if the second year is easier than the first one. A year ago, I compared my grief to labor and I said that grief can be overwhelming just like transition during labor can be overwhelming and I said that this transition will end.


annegb said...

Thank you for this, Stephen. My grief sure hurt like labor, only longer.

Stephen, something happened yesterday that is so revealing to me. Sarah was five when James died, and although, at five she loved him, she doesn't really remember him. But he seems to come up again and again for her. She cries for him.

Yesterday, she asked me, "Mom, if I died, would you love me as much as you love James?"

I stared at her in shock. I said, "I love you totally, sis, I don't love James more than I love you." She said, "It feels like you do."

As I thought about it, I realized that she was mistaking my grief, guilt, and regret, for affection. I spoke to her and told her there was a difference, that I loved James,but the deep feelings I have at his death are just that: grief, guilt, agony, regret. I love him, he's my son, but his death brought about a whole new spectrum of feelings.

I feel so badly that perhaps my kids have misconstrued these things. I wonder if my two stepchildren feel this way, as well.

I need to find a way to grieve without shutting out my kids, I guess. I don't know how she got that feeling.

Isn't that intriguing? Painful, for her, and sad for me if my kids don't know how much I love them, but dang, I didn't even know that was happening.

Barb said...

Annegb, it so good that Sarah was able to be open so you could let her know. It makes all the difference.

It isn't easy to know what to say when someone experiences a loss of a loved one. It helps to hear from those who have lost and learn what not to say. I don't think people usually say things to be hurtful. They are trying to comfort, but are very inept at doing so.