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Virtual Book Tour – Interview with Chelsea Hanson – Author of The Sudden Loss Survival Guide – 7 Essential Practices to Heal Grief

Posted by ididnotknowwhattosay on May 15, 2020

Thank you for joining us on our Virtual Book Tour.

Today we welcome Chelsea Hanson – Author of The Sudden Loss Survival Guide – 7 Essential Practices to Heal Grief. Chelsea’s book offers many valuable resources on how to work through your personal grief. I had the pleasure to preview Chelsea’s book and found it easy to follow and insightful. I encourage you to read each chapter and allow it to speak to your heart and help you heal.

Please feel free to comment or share your own experiences on how your friends and family have assisted you in restoring balance in your life after the loss of a loved one in the comment section below.

 

What inspired you to write the book The Sudden Loss Survival Guide – 7 Essential Practices to Heal Grief?

When a loved one dies unexpectedly, the person left behind often does not know what to do and needs guidance. After the sudden loss of my mother, I didn’t know where to turn for help, nor how to put the pieces of my life back together. The Sudden Loss Survival Guide gathers everything that I learned during my own healing process and serves as a trusted companion to assist those who’ve experienced life-changing loss. It’s the book I wish I would’ve had when my parents dies.

My healing was not easy, but I believe others can have a less arduous journey when they have the necessary tools and information to navigate loss. That’s why I wrote the Sudden Loss Survival Guide—to offer the bereaved and those supporting them, a concrete road map to move through life’s challenges and seemingly insurmountable obstacles.

I share the healing practices and tools that allowed me to mourn, grieve, and honor the memory of those I love. The experience of writing my book and working with those grieving has shown me that healing from loss can and does occur with proactive grief work. With the desire to heal and the willingness to do the hard work of mourning, it’s possible to integrate loss into your life, and over time, embrace life again.

Why do you feel that people have such a hard time talking about their grief?

Most people don’t like to talk or think about loss because they fear it. They don’t want to admit unexpected death will happen or that it’s real. Western society likes to keep the thought of dying at a distance because most people don’t want to be reminded of their mortality.

It wasn’t always this way, but twenty-first-century culture perpetuates denial and avoidance of grief. By contrast, our ancestors were more enlightened. They honored their loved ones in death, privately and publicly, through rituals. Past generations wore symbols of bereavement, used designated time periods for mourning, and relied on nearby family and close-knit communities for support. Because of lower life expectancies than we have today, they often experienced personal losses at a young age. Death was part of everyday life, and families were familiar with societal rituals and practices to care for the bereaved.

But today, people haven’t learned how to talk about dying or how to support the bereaved. Due to this lack of education and fear, you may be hesitant to talk about your loss and how much it changes your life.

Let others know it’s okay to discuss sudden death, dying, and your loved one. By being aware of society’s lack of grief education and discomfort with death, you can guide conversations away from unhelpful information towards asking for the support you need.
 

Why do you feel people hold on to their grief?

Sometimes grievers don’t want to heal because they mistakenly belief the pain keeps them close to those they lost. In reality, it is the love that keeps you close, not the suffering.

Grievers often hold onto their grief as a tribute to their beloved person. People resist the idea of healing because they believe they will be forgetting their loved one. Nothing can be farther from the truth. You can never forget the person who died. It’s impossible. You can, however, release the pain and remember the deep love. You can continue to love the deceased while living. You will love the person you lost until you die. And even after you are physically gone, your soul will continue to love.


What is one way you let go of your personal grief?

I cultivated an enduring, spiritual connection with my loved ones. I was able to let go grief by learning that the relationship with those we love continues. I formed a different relationship with the ones I missed based on love and spirit, instead of sadness and pain. I found a place in my soul where death does not sever the relationship, but where the continuing bonds of love flourish and my beloved moves forward “with” me in memory and daily life. This is the place where the past and present co-exist as a part of me.

A more concrete way I moved towards healing was by allowing, experiencing, and expressing my grief. I gave myself permission to feel exactly how I was feeling and to ignore family patterns, societal expectations, or limiting beliefs about how to handle loss. I found that fully experienced grief will disappear, and love will remain.


How can you assist someone that is losing their faith after a loss?

You may not have thought about your faith as much as you do now, given your circumstance. At the same time, you’ve likely never felt such little faith as you do now. To believe in faith is easy when everything is simple and stress-free, but when something bad happens, faith becomes confusing and complicated. You may need to determine if your previous beliefs still serve you now.

Only the bereaved person can assign meaning to an unexpected loss that has affected his or her soul. You may demand answers to questions that are unanswerable. You can search and yearn for answers and still not know. Perhaps only eternity may provide true understanding.

One thing I can tell you: The sudden death of the person you love is never a punishment, retribution, or retaliation for how you lived your life. Unfortunately, it is the natural course of things in the universe—a realm that will support you in your time of need.

You’ll make sense of the chaos of loss in your own way and in your own time. It’s your choice to search for and choose the meaning you would like to assign to the death of your loved one.

How can family and friends foster a support system for a loved one that is grieving?

When you are new to grief, other others want to help, but they often aren’t sure what to do. You need to tell them how to help you. Others will respond with direct requests from you when you’re specific. Remember, many people have not experienced the death of someone they care about, so they don’t naturally know how to assist you.

If a person is to depleted to ask for assistance, family and friends need to offer specific assistance, rather than say, “Call me if you need anything.” Those supporting a bereaved person should check back regularly and often. Offer assistance, provide companionship, and listen attentively. Be proactive and offer support before it is asked for or needed.

 

What is your favorite way to honor your loved ones?

I remember my loved ones in daily life. Adjusting to the loss of the person you love does not mean burying memories, pretending he or she never lived, or getting rid of all personal belongings and tangible reminders. Instead, you adapt to your changed circumstances by using ongoing remembrance to feel the steadfast love and enduring spirit of your beloved each day.

I also found that when you use a conscious, healthy process to honor your dear one in daily life through remembrance, you’ll hold onto the love, spirit, and essence of the person. By remembering your beloved in daily life, love continues to exist. As you remember, you’ll never forget. And isn’t that we all want?

 

 What is one way someone that is grieving can step into their purpose again?

Imagine that you want to “live on” and rebuild your life to honor the person you love. Answer the questions with the first thoughts that come into your mind.

  • What do you desire right now?
  • What would you really love to do?
  • What have you always wanted to do but have been afraid to try?
  • Where would you like to reside or travel?
  • What unfinished projects or dreams would you like to complete?
  • In what ways can you add meaning to your life?
  • How can you authentically live your life?

Give yourself time and space to contemplate your future. You may be used to surpassing your wants to meet others’ expectations, dismissing your desires as “unrealistic,” or substituting the “rational” goals of others as your own. But now, after loss, you can choose what you want if you allow yourself.

It’s possible you can live not only for yourself, but for the person you love who died. Your loved one still lives on through your actions, accomplishments, and how you live your daily life.
 

What is one thing you would like your readers to take away from your books?

Change is inherent in life, whether birth, death, illness, aging, or other unwelcome losses. But these changes do not have to cause permanent, going suffering. The death of a loved one is inevitable, but being paralyzed by fear, anxiety, and grief is not.

Joy, love, and even peace is possible again when you desire healing. While you cannot control loss, you can proactively guide your own healing. Time along with effort, the intention to heal, and conscious mourning will gradually bring comfort.

What do you want our readers to know about you as an author and Grief Coach?

I can now offer others what I wish I would’ve had when my parents died—as handbook on how to not only survive life-changing loss, but also reengage in life with new, profound meaning.

The death of those I love changed me forever. With this real pain came real transformation. I became more open, loving, and braver than before. I discovered the depths of love. I found my true self in the pieces of my shattered heart.

My brokenness was a catalyst for transformation into wholeness—to my authentic self.

I said yes to living again. And you can do the same. Healing is possible.

The Sudden Loss Survival Guide is the idea, first place to start.


About Chelsea Hanson

Chelsea Hanson is a leading grief educator and the author of The Sudden Loss Survival Guide -7 Essential Practices for Healing Grief.

Hanson found her true purpose in grief support and legacy work and graduated from the University of Wisconsin – Madison as a grief support specialist with certifications in holistic life coaching and life legacy preservation. By connecting her 20 years of business expertise with her true calling, she is an entrepreneur who specializes in grief products and programs to help others transform personal setbacks into opportunities to live a meaningful life.

Hanson transcended unexpected loss over time, losing both her father and mother at a young age. She now lives and works in Green Bay, Wisconsin, with her husband and son.

 About the Sudden Loss Survival Guide – Seven Essential Practices for Healing Grief

The Sudden Loss Survival Guide provides an indispensable road map to guide those who’ve experienced a life-changing loss. The book’s in-depth, transformative process—the Seven Grief Healing Practices—delivers the essential answers and tools needed to survive, cope, and heal from the devastating impact of sudden loss.

While you cannot control losing a loved one, he or she can consciously guide recovery by taking an intentional, action-based approach to healing. Through the application of simple, proactive practices, along with understanding the basics of grief—how to work through it and how to make it easier—the survivor is empowered with a life-affirming map to navigate from sorrow to joy and from the depths of grief to the heights of living.

 Pick up a copy of The Sudden Loss Survival Guide here:

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2uNKcJQ

IndieBound: http://bit.ly/2tfeyEz

Posted in Grief Resources, Loss of a Parent, Share Your Story, Virtual Book Tour | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Mother’s Day Remembrance

Posted by ididnotknowwhattosay on May 14, 2017

Mother’s Day can be a difficult time for those that have lost a child, have had a miscarriage, a stillbirth or have lost their mother or grandmother.

 “A mother is not defined by the number of children you can see, but by the love she holds in her heart.”
~  Franchesca Cox

For those that are grieving today, my hope for you is that your family and friends surround you with the love and support you need to heal your heart today.

“A mother is she who can take the place of all others but whose place no one else can take.”
– Cardinal Mermillod

Do you have a special tradition or celebration that honors your mom’s memory on Mother’s Day? We would love to be able to share your story with our readers. Please email your story to us at info@ididnotknowwhattosay.com.

Mother’s Day Remembrance & Grief Support Resources
Loss of a child, Miscarriage/Stillborn, Loss of a Mother & Loss of a Grandmother

Loss of a Parent
Resources on how to support a loved one grieving the loss of a parent.

Miscarriage ~ Stillbirth ~ Infant Loss
Resources on how to support a loved one grieving the loss due to Miscarriage, Stillbirth or Infant loss.

Mother’s Day Remembrance Gifts
Loss of a child, Miscarriage/Stillborn, Loss of a Mother & Loss of a Grandmother

Visit our Thoughtful Sympathy Gifts page for a wide variety of sympathy gift ideas for your loved ones. We hope the thoughtful gifts listed on our website inspire you to give warmth and joy to your friends and family in their time of need.

Sending lots of love and hugs today,

Lori Pederson, Founder
I Did Not Know What To Say.com

Posted in Loss of a Mother, Loss of a Parent, Mother's Day | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Happy Mother’s Day to all the Mother’s out there and to my Mom watching over me!

Posted by ididnotknowwhattosay on May 8, 2016

Mother’s Day can be a difficult time for those that have lost a child, have had a miscarriage, a stillbirth or have lost their mother or grandmother. From my own experience, Mother’s Day is filled with mixed emotions of celebration and sadness from the loss of my mother and from my miscarriage a few years ago.

For those that are grieving today, my hope for you is that your family and friends surround you with the love and support you need to heal your heart today.

 “A mother is not defined by the number of children you can see, but by the love she holds in her heart.”
~  Franchesca Cox

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“The death of a mother is the first sorrow wept without her.”

Do you have a special tradition or celebration that honors your mom’s memory on Mother’s Day? We would love to be able to share your story with our readers. Please email your story to us at info@ididnotknowwhattosay.com.

Mother’s Day Remembrance & Grief Support Resources
Loss of a child, Miscarriage/Stillborn, Loss of a Mother & Loss of a Grandmother

Loss of a Parent
Resources on how to support a loved one grieving the loss of a parent.

Miscarriage ~ Stillbirth ~ Infant Loss
Resources on how to support a loved one grieving the loss due to Miscarriage, Stillbirth or Infant loss.

Mother’s Day Remembrance Gifts
Loss of a child, Miscarriage/Stillborn, Loss of a Mother & Loss of a Grandmother

Visit our Thoughtful Sympathy Gifts page for a wide variety of sympathy gift ideas for your loved ones. We hope the thoughtful gifts listed on our website inspire you to give warmth and joy to your friends and family in their time of need.

Sending lots of love and hugs today,

Lori Pederson, Founder
I Did Not Know What To Say.com

ididnotknow

Posted in Grief Support & Holidays, Holiday Grief Support, Loss of a Child, Loss of a Mother, Loss of a Parent, Mother's Day, Uncategorized, What Not to Say to a Grieving Loved One, What to do for someone that is grieving | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Happy Mother’s Day to all the Mother’s out there and to my Mom watching over me!

Posted by ididnotknowwhattosay on May 10, 2015

I know Mother’s Day can be a difficult time for those that have lost a child, have had a miscarriage, a stillbirth or have lost their mother or grandmother. From my own experience, Mother’s Day is filled with mixed emotions of celebration and sadness from the loss of my mother and from my miscarriage a few years ago.

For those that are grieving today, my hope for you is that your family and friends surround you with the love and support you need to heal your heart today.

 “A mother is not defined by the number of children you can see, but by the love she holds in her heart.”
~  Franchesca Cox

Do you have a special tradition or celebration that honors your mom’s memory on Mother’s Day? We would love to be able to share your story with our readers. Please email your story to us at info@ididnotknowwhattosay.com.

Mother’s Day Remembrance & Grief Support Resources
Loss of a child, Miscarriage/Stillborn, Loss of a Mother & Loss of a Grandmother

Loss of a Parent
Resources on how to support a loved one grieving the loss of a parent.

Miscarriage ~ Stillbirth ~ Infant Loss
Resources on how to support a loved one grieving the loss due to Miscarriage, Stillbirth or Infant loss.

Mother’s Day Remembrance Gifts
Loss of a child, Miscarriage/Stillborn, Loss of a Mother & Loss of a Grandmother

Visit our Thoughtful Sympathy Gifts page for a wide variety of sympathy gift ideas for your loved ones. We hope the thoughtful gifts listed on our website inspire you to give warmth and joy to your friends and family in their time of need.

Sending lots of love and hugs today,

Lori Pederson, Founder
I Did Not Know What To Say.com

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Posted in Grief Resources, Grief Support & Holidays, Loss of a Child, Loss of a Grandparent, Loss of a Mother, Loss of a Parent, Miscarriage, Mother's Day | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

10 Important Things I Would Tell My Younger Self About Grief and Loss

Posted by ididnotknowwhattosay on February 25, 2015

Expert Author Lori Pederson

I was only 25 years old when my mom passed away and at that point I had only experienced a few losses in my life. But that would quickly change. In a matter of a month, I lost my mom and one of my mentors to ovarian cancer and my aunt was killed in a car accident. To say I was devastated would be an understatement. As I reflect on the many lessons I have learned over the years about healing after a loss, I wish I could go back and give my 25-year-old self some reassuring words to help me get through the many rough days ahead. So here are a few important things I would share with my younger self:

1. LOVE IS NEVER ENDING. Your mom’s presence and love will ALWAYS be with you. Her loving spirit will comfort you throughout your life.

2. YOU WILL SURVIVE. Although the pain right now is unimaginable, each day it will get easier and you will find your way through the grief and create a new normal in your life.

3. BE GRATEFUL. Wonderful people will show up to support you and help you work through your grief; be grateful for them every day.

4. FORGIVE. Some people will not be there for you, realize it is not their journey to travel down this new road with you. Even though it will be difficult, forgive them and let it go. It does not serve you to hold on to the anger.

5. LIFE IS SHORT. Life is truly short, don’t let it pass you by. My mom was 50 years old when she passed away and now that I have just turned 48 years old I can truly see how quickly time passes. As the famous line from the movie The Shawshank Redemption goes “It comes down to a simple choice, get busy living or get busy dying.” Embrace life and live each day for you and your mom.

6. SHARE YOUR EXPERIENCE WITH OTHERS. The pain you are experiencing now will help others who are going through a loss. Be willing to share your experience and be open to allowing others to share their stories. Through sharing our stories we all heal.

7. EACH LOSS IS UNIQUE. I am sorry to tell you, but you will experience many more losses in your life. Each one will be unique in its own way, but the lessons you have learned today will help you work through the grief you will experience in the future.

8. LET THE TEARS FLOW. Let the tears come and allow all the feelings you are experiencing to flow. Holding back your emotions will only delay the healing process. The only way to heal is to go through the pain, not around it.

9. YOU WILL NEVER BE THE SAME AND THAT IS OK! Losing your mother will forever change who you are and how you see the world. Embrace this change, it will open you up in ways you never could imagine.

10. LET JOY IN. Remember to have a sense of humor and let the joy in. It is OK to laugh even when you are grieving. Embrace the fun times you had with your mom and be open to exploring life again. Laughter will help breathe life back into your world.

If you have experienced the loss of a loved one, what would you like to tell your younger self?

©2014 Lori Pederson
WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR E-ZINE OR WEB SITE? You can, as long as you include this complete blurb with it: Lori Pederson, Founder of I Did Not Know What To Say, a website created to inspire and to provide you with tools to assist a loved one through the grieving process. If you would like our free newsletter on how to assist your friends and family through the journey of restoring balance in their life after the death of a loved one, please visit our website at http://www.ididnotknowwhattosay.com.

Posted in Grief Resources, Grief Resources - Newsletter, Grief Support Discussion Topics, Loss of a Aunt/Uncle, Loss of a Mother, Loss of a Parent, Share Your Story, What to do for someone that is grieving | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

10 Important Things I Would Tell My Younger Self About Grief and Loss

Posted by ididnotknowwhattosay on December 12, 2014

I was only 25 years old when my mom passed away and at that point I had only experienced a few losses in my life. But that would quickly change. In a matter of a month, I lost my mom and one of my mentors to ovarian cancer and my aunt was killed in a car accident. To say I was devastated would be an understatement. As I reflect on the many lessons I have learned over the years about healing after a loss, I wish I could go back and give my 25 year old self some reassuring words to help me get through the many rough days ahead.  So here are a few important things I would share with my younger self:

  1. LOVE IS NEVERENDING. Your mom’s presence and love will ALWAYS be with you. Her loving spirit will comfort you throughout your life.
  2. YOU WILL SURVIVE. Although the pain right now is unimaginable, each day it will get easier and you will find your way through the grief and create a new normal in your life.
  3. BE GRATEFUL. Wonderful people will show up to support you and help you work through your grief; be 197grateful for them every day.
  4. FORGIVE.  Some people will not be there for you, realize it is not their journey to travel down this new road with you. Even though it will be difficult, forgive them and let it go. It does not serve you to hold on to the anger.
  5. LIFE IS SHORT. Life is truly short, don’t let it pass you by. My mom was 50 years old when she passed away and now that I have just turned 48 years old I can truly see how quickly time passes. As the famous line from The Shawshank Redemption goes “It comes down to a simple choice, get busy living or get busy dying.” Embrace life and live each day for you and your mom.
  6. SHARE YOUR EXPERIENCE WITH OTHERS. The pain you are experiencing now will help others who are going through a loss. Be willing to share your experience and be open to allowing others to share their stories. Through sharing our stories we all heal.
  7. EACH LOSS IS UNIQUE. I am sorry to tell you, but you will experience many more losses in your life. Each one will be unique in its own way, but the lessons you have learned today will help you work through the grief you will experience in the future.
  8. LET THE TEARS FLOW. Let the tears come and allow all the feelings you are experiencing to flow. Holding back your emotions will only delay the healing process. The only way to heal is to go through the pain, not around it.
  9. YOU WILL NEVER BE THE SAME AND THAT IS OK! Losing your mother will forever change who you are and how you see the world. Embrace this change, it will open you up in ways you never could imagine.
  10. LET JOY IN. Remember to have a sense of humor and let the joy in. It is ok to laugh even when you are grieving. Embrace the fun times you had with your mom and be open to exploring life again. Laughter will help breathe life back into your world.

If you have experienced the loss of a loved one, what would you like to tell your younger self.

 

©2014 Lori Pederson WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR E-ZINE OR WEB SITE? You can, as long as you include this complete blurb with it: Lori Pederson, Founder of I Did Not Know What To Say, a website created to inspire and to provide you with tools to assist a loved one through the grieving process. If you would like our free newsletter on how to assist your friends and family through the journey of restoring balance in their life after the death of a loved one, please visit our website at www.ididnotknowwhattosay.com.

Posted in Loss of a Aunt/Uncle, Loss of a Friend, Loss of a Mother, Loss of a Parent, What to do for someone that is grieving | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Virtual Book Tour – Interview with Uma Girish – Author of “LOSING AMMA, FINDING HOME: A MEMOIR ABOUT LOVE, LOSS AND LIFE’S DETOURS”

Posted by ididnotknowwhattosay on August 7, 2014

Thank you for joining us on our Virtual Book Tour.

Today we welcome UMA GIRISH, author of “LOSING AMMA, FINDING HOME: A MEMOIR ABOUT LOVE, LOSS AND LIFE’S DETOURS”. Uma’s interview offers many insights into life, death and losing a parent.

Please feel free to comment or share your own experiences on how your friends and family have assisted you in restoring balance in your life after the loss of a loved one in the comment section below

1. What inspired you to write the book LOSING AMMA, FINDING HOME: A MEMOIR ABOUT LOVE, LOSS AND LIFE’S DETOURS?
When a loved one dies, all hope dies with them. In picking up the pieces of my life, and finding a way to make meaning of my loss, I felt that this message needed to be shared to inspire everyone dealing with a devastating loss. That was the main reason why I felt compelled to write this memoir. Also, I have long since known that the gift of writing was given to me to serve the world. This was one of the ways I was called to do that.

2. How did your mom’s passing help you learn more about Love, Life and Life’s Detours?
Amma’s passing caused a deep existential ache within me. In trying to figure out my own purpose and what I was meantLosing Amma to do with this life, I discovered that love is all there is. Our biggest purpose in this life is to love one another. Life is all about the soul’s evolution and the wounds we are given are meant to be used as lessons. The only way we can use the pain of loss is by reaching out and helping someone who has lost a loved one. My life took a detour, both geographically and spiritually. That detour saved me. It opened me up. It taught me that when a path opens up for me, I am meant to walk down that road with trust and integrity.

3. How did finding your life purpose assist you in the healing process?
It taught me that my life was less about me and more about everyone I touched. And that was the only way to heal. It taught me that I could only heal when I connected with and served another who was in pain. I am only able to do that when I am willing to open my heart and share the truth of my story. When I share with honesty and vulnerability, I make the greatest of connections: the human connection. So finding out what I was meant to do with this wonderful life was key to not only how I healed, but how I helped others heal their pain.

4. What are some of the cultural differences in working through grief that you experienced between your home country of India and the US? What cultural differences should people be aware of?
In India, grief and mourning are communal and collective events. It I much more public than it is in the West. It is not uncommon to see funeral processions take over the main thoroughfares and inconvenience traffic, even during rush hour. The body is atop a decorated carriage which is then paraded through the streets, rose petals are showered through the journey to the crematorium and there’s dance and music to accompany the funeral party. I experienced isolation here because I didn’t know too many people or have friends. I was new. My mother had no context. It was very alienating. I longed for the familiar: my family, my environment, my cultural context where I knew what was appropriate to say and do.

5. Our website focuses on providing tips to friends and family members on how to support a loved one through the grieving process. What would be your suggestions on how friends and family can support a loved one that has lost a parent?
• Don’t be impatient with their grief. People take as much time as they need to, to mourn and grieve a loss. If you’re unable to bear witness to their pain, don’t. If you are, then be patient with their recovery process.
• Share stories. Tell them stories they don’t know about their loved one, about your interactions with them or an act of kindness you received from them. Don’t make the dead person invisible by not mentioning their name.
• Allow them to lead. A lot of times we feel the need to tell the griever what they need. Ask them to voice what they need and serve that need if you’re able to.
• Avoid clichés like “You had her all these years” or “God doesn’t give you more than you can handle” or “Time heals everything.” If you don’t have words, say nothing. Just listen. Hug. Show up. That’s all we need to do when there’s nothing to fix.

6. What do you wish your family or friends had done differently after you lost your mom?
I wish they hadn’t buried my mother all over again—by not mentioning her name for fear that it would make me cry. I wish they had been more patient with my grief instead of telling me that I’d cried enough and that it was time to move on. I wish I hadn’t heard the words “So many orphans don’t know what it is to have a parent. At least, you had her all these years.” I wish they’d been more interested in stories about my mother, the only way I had of keeping her alive.

7. What is one thing you would like readers to take away from your book?
That pain and grief are not given to us by some avenging God. They are part of our soul’s growth and when we turn our pain into purpose, we heal and we use our pain to serve from a bigger platform and help others heal.

8. What would you like our readers to know about you?
I am passionate about helping women who are grieving a loss turn their pain into purpose so that they can find new meaning and joy in their lives. As a Certified Dream Coach, I also help women who feel lost, or those who are in transition, to get clear about their passion and purpose using a 10-step program.

9. Have you written any other books? Do you plan to write any other books in the future?
Yes to both! My eBook is called “Understanding Death: 10 Ways to Inner Peace for the Grieving” and is available as a Kindle and Nook version, and also on iTunes. Writing, speaking and teaching are as integral to me as breathing. I’m halfway through my next book and also plan to teach writing workshops soon.

UGirish 2

 

ABOUT UMA GIRISH

Uma Girish is a Grief Guide, Certified Dream Coach, and award-winning author whose work has been published in 7 countries. She hosts a weekly radio show “The Grammar of Grief.” For archived shows, visit http://uma.creatingcalmnetwork.com to buy a copy of her memoir “Losing Amma, Finding Home” please visit http://www.umagirish.com. You can also stay updated on her events by subscribing to her newsletter via her website.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our Virtual Book Tourhttp://www.ididnotknowwhattosay.com/griefbooks-virtualbooktour.html

Grief Support Resources: http://www.ididnotknowwhattosay.com/grief_support_groups.html

Posted in Loss of a Mother, Loss of a Parent, Mother's Day, Share Your Story, Virtual Book Tour | Leave a Comment »

Happy Mother’s Day!

Posted by ididnotknowwhattosay on May 12, 2014

Happy Mother’s Day to all the Mother’s here and in Heaven and to my Mom who is always watching over me.

I know Mother’s Day can be a difficult time for those that have lost a child, have had a miscarriage or have lost their mother. From my own experience, Mother’s Day is filled with mixed emotions of celebration and sadness from the loss of my mother and from my miscarriage a few years ago. For those that are grieving today, my hope for you is that you are comforted with warm memories of your mom, grandmother or your precious child.

“My mom is a never ending song in my heart of comfort, happiness, and being.
I may sometimes forget the words but I always remember the tune.”
~Graycie Harmon

Do you have a special tradition or celebration that honors your mom’s memory on Mother’s Day? We would love to be able to share your story with our readers. Please email your story to us at info@ididnotknowwhattosay.com.

Loss of a Parent
Resources on how to support a loved one grieving the loss of a parent.

Mother’s Day Remembrance Gifts
Loss of a child, Miscarriage/Stillborn, Loss of a Mother & Loss of a Grandmother

Visit our Thoughtful Sympathy Gifts page for a wide variety of sympathy gift ideas for your loved ones. We hope the thoughtful gifts listed on our website inspire you to give warmth and joy to your friends and family in their time of need.

Happy Mother’s Day!

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Posted in Grief Support & Holidays, Grief Support Discussion Topics, Holiday Grief Support, Loss of a Child, Loss of a Grandparent, Loss of a Mother, Loss of a Parent, Miscarriage, Mother's Day | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Virtual Book Tour – Interview with Julie Saeger Nierenberg – Author of “Daddy, this is it. Being-with My Dying Dad”

Posted by ididnotknowwhattosay on May 2, 2014

Thank you for joining us on our Virtual Book Tour.

Today we welcome Julie Saeger Nierenberg author of Daddy, this is it. Being-with My Dying Dad. Julie’s interview offers many insights into life, death and losing a parent.

Please feel free to comment or share your own experiences on how your friends and family have assisted you in restoring balance in your life after the loss of a loved one in the comment section below

 

1. What inspired you to write the book Daddy, this is it. Being-with My Dying Dad?

In his final days, my father, a writer of his own memoirs, encouraged me to write about the dying experience. For a few weeks after he died, I was “being-with” his death in a way that didn’t upset me terribly. And then, it hit me suddenly in an unexpected way. I felt torn and left behind by my father’s loss. The closeness we shared in life had changed, and I was angry and deeply saddened to “get it” that my life was going on without his physical presence. I began to journal every few days about what had taken place so that I might accept and integrate my feelings. This writing process spanned several months, as each time I would return to it, I reread what I’d written so far. This journal was like a mirror to me; in it I saw what had happened and who I was now, after the experience of death changed my life.

2. What did you learn about dying and life by being with your father through his final stages of life?

I learned not to fear death. My father was a courageous teacher, demonstrating candor and compassion for himself and each of his loved ones, as he prepared to die. I learned to follow my father’s lead, to be silent or to talk, to touch or be touched, to listen or to sing to him. In turns he chose to savor sweet pleasures and endure the depth of pain that convinced him of his readiness to die. I learned that life is a treasure we can share fully and lovingly, all our days, including the final ones. This anonymous saying sums it up very well: “There are things that we don’t want to happen but have to accept, things we don’t want to know but have to learn, and people we can’t live without but have to let go.”

3. How can a family best support a loved one’s final wishes as they go through the final stages of life?

I suggest that we not wait till the final stages to share our final wishes. Now is the best time to pre-plan and to inform all parties — family, close friends and medical or other care providers — of our specific preferences, if we have them. Advance directives can help with this process, and there is no substitute for clear communication among all concerned. Having this knowledge clearly discerned in advance, and being prepared to talk about death as a normal and natural part of life at any point in our lives, will help us all to be-with loss and grief when the time comes. Listen and ask and answer and listen some more. You may learn something that is life-changing while being-with the dying.

4. What suggestions do you have on how to deal with death?

Love (the verb). Allow love to conquer any fears or misgivings. Love is eternal. It does not die when the physical body expires. Love the dying person with all your heart and let love lead you through the process. Love yourself and your circle of survivors, freely giving and taking what you need: time, patience, permission and understanding. A death can inspire new life in those who allow it. Accept that grief is a never-ending and transformative force born of deep love. Let it cleanse and guide you as it flows freely through your life. Embrace change.

5. How did having a “Celebration of Life” rather than a traditional funeral assist you and your family start the healing process after your Dad passed away?

The celebration, as requested by my dad, gave attenders the opportunity to speak and offer other forms of remembrance, such as song and poetry. It set the tone for the rest of our lives without him, an occasion to rejoice in his life even as we mourned his death. The stories shared onDaddy this is it2 this day enlivened our personal memories of him and gave us a greater perspective on the many lives he touched.

6. Our website focuses on providing tips to friends and family members on how to support a loved one through the grieving process. What would be your suggestions on how friends and family can support a loved one that has lost a parent?

Be ready to be-with grieving loved ones. Prepare yourself to accept whatever stage of grief the bereaved might be experiencing, without expectation. Offer unconditional love and truly give it unconditionally. Offer specific things that you can do or bring or activities to share with the grieving. Accept that these things may not be wanted at the time you offer them. Don’t take any of the manifestations of grief that you witness in a personal way. Grieving people may be inconsolable, angry, withdrawn, needy or stubborn. They also may need a break to laugh or dance with joy. They may want to talk about their memories of the parent, all kinds of memories. Inexperience, pride or confusion may inhibit their ability to ask for or to communicate what they need when they need it. Give them patience and time and unlimited understanding. Continue to offer as if support has no expiration date.

7. What do you wish your family or friends had done differently after you lost your father?

I do not wish for anything different from what my friends and family did. Everyone has his/her own emotional and spiritual perspective regarding death and grief, and I accept those differences; we cannot all be perfectly matched at all times, no matter how close we feel.

8. What is one thing you would like readers to take away from your book?

I felt my father’s love every day of my life, and that love hasn’t faltered since his passing. Indeed, he is with me every day, alive in my life as a powerful, joyful and motivating presence.

9. What would you like our readers to know about you?

I am a writer and editor taking a stand for the culture shift of “elderhood” in North America. I stand for the value of elder wisdom, participation and leadership in our society. I stand for the creation and regeneration of practices that nurture and support elder valuation, connection and integration. I stand for my own evolution as an elder and for that of all elders into roles of societal healing, conscious inspiration and holistic community. Sharing our stories is one very effective way that we build community and communicate value. I assist others to tell their stories and to publish them, leaving a legacy for other readers to enjoy.

10. Have you written any other books? Do you plan to write any other books in the future?

I am currently co-writing with a social worker a book series about death, dying and end of life issues. In this series, we offer real-life circumstances, attempt to define and describe them, and discuss ways to proactively deal with them. To provide valuable insights we present multiple perspectives: personal, professional and societal.

I have written, edited and published several other books and am currently in the process of publishing more, including some historical family memoirs dating to the early 1800s. I feel very privileged to work with other writers who publish their own works of fiction and nonfiction. My own writing is primarily focused on memoir, spiritual and personal development with some humor sprinkled in.

About Julie Saeger Nierenberg
Inspired by my father’s living example as an author and activist, I write to contribute to how we prepare, individually and collectively, to live and support the final chapters of life. I write to immerse in the moment and to experience the satisfaction that writing can bring.

As a much younger adult, I meandered through a variety of career emphases in environmental and biomedical sciences before realizing I was called to be an educator. I enjoyed nearly twenty years, first as a Whole Language, Spanish and art teacher and then as an administrator of gifted and talented children. I am the proud parent of two daughters, and the joy and purpose I feel in that role is a guiding light in my daily life.

In 2006, I moved from the home of my roots in Oklahoma to Toronto, Ontario. There, I reinvented my career to flexibly accommodate travel between my old and my new homes. I established a freelance business as a writer, editor, author coach and self-publisher.

Please visit my CreateWrite Enterprises website at http://www.createwriteenterprises.com.

Find me on LinkedIn at http://ca.linkedin.com/in/juliesaegernierenberg/

My book, Daddy this is it. Being-with My Dying Dad, can be purchased from:

CreateSpace e-store:
https://www.createspace.com/4226826

 

 “Daddy, this is it. Being-with My Dying Dad” is featured on our Helpful Books page –  – http://www.ididnotknowwhattosay.com/helpfulbooks.html & Our Virtual Book Tour –
http://www.ididnotknowwhattosay.com/griefbooks-virtualbooktour.html

Grief Support Resources: http://www.ididnotknowwhattosay.com/grief_support_groups.html

Grief Support Resources: http://www.ididnotknowwhattosay.com/grief_support_groups.html

Posted in Father's Day, Grief Support Discussion Topics, Loss of a Father, Loss of a Parent, Virtual Book Tour | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Sign-Up Today for the FREE Grief Healing Telesummit: March 10 -18, 2014

Posted by ididnotknowwhattosay on March 5, 2014

Grief Healing Telesummit:

Enjoy free access to 17 amazing speakers who share their best information to
help you transform grief into healing and living again!

  Free Registration at http://griefhealingtelesummit.com/lpederson
March 10 -18, 2014
Please share with those with a grieving heart!

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Look at this amazing line up of experts!
I Did Not Know What To Say – Wed. March 12 at 1pm EST
The Grief Toolbox Toolbox
What’s Your Grief
Peace & Wellness Centere
Embrace Your Inner Self
Simply Kerryy
Dorothy Fitzer
Global Association of Holistic Psychotherapy
With Sympathy Gifts & Keepsakes,
Tina Games, Michael Mapes, Margaret Paul, Maggie Chula, Uma Girish, Tabitha Jayne and
Transcending Loss: Understanding the lifelong impact of grief

Free Registration at http://griefhealingtelesummit.com/lpederson
March 10 -18, 2014
Please share with those with a grieving heart!

Posted in Caregiver, Children Grief Support, Gratitude, Grief Resources, Grief Resources - Newsletter, Grief Support & Holidays, Grief Support Discussion Topics, Grief Support Workshops, Holiday Grief Support, Hospice/Palliative Care, Inspiration, Loss due to Suicide, Loss of a Aunt/Uncle, Loss of a Child, Loss of a Father, Loss of a Friend, Loss of a Grandparent, Loss of a Mother, Loss of a Parent, Loss of a Pet, Loss of a Sibling, Loss of a Spouse, Memorial Day, Men & Grief, Stillborn, Suicide Survivors, Thoughtful Sympathy Gifts, What Not To Say, What Not to Say to a Grieving Loved One, What to do for someone that is grieving | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »