Cultivate a Friendship with Death

 
Why We Fear Death "Men fear death as children fear to go in the dark." - Bacon There may be a thousand reasons why we fear death, but most of all we fear death because we fear the unknown, and death is an unknown entity to most people. We fear that dying may be painful and we do not know what will happen to us at the point of death. Some people fear death because they imagine the dying process to be very painful. Death is not painful. In fact, death is often very peaceful and silent even for those suffering from cancers or other terminal illness....
 

After Suicide: Returning to Life, Thanks to an Owl

 
Have you ever lost the ability to laugh? I did. When Arlyn died, I knew I would never laugh again. After all, my child had taken her own life; she had died by suicide. How could I really laugh, when I felt so empty? How could I let lose and laugh out loud, when I hurt so much? Oh, I've managed to smile sometimes, and the sound of quiet laughter has slipped out of my lips a few times, but they were only superficial gestures: no belly laughs for me. Then, a few months ago, I flew to Ft. Meade, Maryland, to visit my sister, Teresa, her husband Mac, and my nine-year old niece, Marisa....
 

Grief Masks

 
October makes me think of Halloween, and Halloween makes me think of masks, and masks remind me that sometimes when we're grieving, we wear masks without even realizing it. We may never stop to think about how other people perceive our appearances, our images and our behaviors. Over time, we may gradually drift into a pattern of "being" that is so familiar to us we never realize that others might be seeing us in a totally different way. Our pain may have caused us to have an outwardly distorted appearance, even when inwardly we may actually feel we are reconciling to our losses....
 

Angelo Dies

 
Angelo C, was a good man that never did any harm. He died yesterday in the shower over a severe asthma attack. The entire school cried and prayed for their old friend Angelo. They joined in a moment of silence at 2:55 pm to let Angelo know that we care. He was a good kid that always made people laugh. He never went a day without giving that shining smile of his. The halls are quite, and the only thing you can hear is God's breath joining us when we cry and pray. I know that Angelo would not want us to cry for him but nobody could help but be in histerics for their dear friend....
 

Death of a Parent: Saying Good-Bye to Mommy or Daddy

 
Coping with the death of a loved one is never easy, regardless of how old you are when that loss occurs. For children who lose a parent, however, the effects can be devastating, indeed, and a plan will need to be put in place so that they can learn to accept this part of the life cycle and move on in a healthy, balanced manner. Understanding Grief It's important to understand that grief will be expressed differently by each person, and that there's no "right" way to grieve. In fact, there's no specific point at which children should be expected to show signs of having coped with the loss of their parent....
 

An Unexpected Letter

 
It was a couple of weeks after Christmas, and I was standing by my mailbox in the vestibule of the apartment building where I lived in Lexington, Kentucky, holding a letter I had just received. The handwriting was not familiar and neither was the return address, although it was postmarked Seattle, Washington, the same place where Hannah Paulson used to live. Many years ago when I was a little girl growing up on our dairy farm in west central Wisconsin, the Paulsons had lived next door to us. The two farms were the only residences located on our mile-long stretch of isolated country road, and during the summer, I journeyed down the hill a couple of times a week to visit Hannah....
 

Sympathy Messages

 
The loss of a loved one. It is often difficult to find the right words to express your sympathy to someone during this time of sorrow. A floral tribute and supportive message can offer much support to those grieving such a loss. Here we list some suggestions, perhaps to inspire you as you offer your condolences with your floral tribute. ~Our deepest condolences ~With Sympathy ~Our thoughts are with you and your family. ~In Loving Memory ~You are in our thoughts and prayers. ~Fondest remembrances ~Thinking of you and offering you hope and comfort....
 

One Stray Tear

 
The delight lit my face as the couple turned the corner into the hallway where we stood in lively conversation. I threw my arms open wide, ignored the cell phones plastered to their ears, greeted each of them, first the husband then the wife who followed slightly behind him. Oblivious, I missed the pained expression on his face as we exchanged hugs. As we separated, I watched a stray tear leak out of the corner of his eye. He kept walking as I shifted my attention to his wife. "He just found out that his sister passed away,"...
 

Coping with Grief - Its Called Living Through It

 
"Dad, I tried to wake Nana, I think she's dead." "Grandpa died yesterday." "Oh my God, Daddy's dead." "Uncle Jack died today." "Grandma died last night." "I'm standing with the body of your deceased father-in-law." "Hon, I think we should get a divorce." "I'm sorry, but we weren't able to resuscitate your mother." "Mike called. He thinks Mary is dead." "I'm sorry to leave this on your voice mail, but Uncle Andy died last night." This litany of phone calls and conversations on death or parting has all occurred in the past 30 years of my life, most in the last 20....
 

Lessons We Learned From Terri Schiavo

 
What a shame. At the same time, look at the two different approaches to grief presented to us, one by her husband Michael and the other by her parents the Schindlers. Michael was clearly ready to "lay her gently down," he was prepared to move on with his new life and to "begin again" with his fiancee and two young children. Some say he was ready a bit too soon, but I disagree. Grief takes as long as it needs, there is no clock for the soul. Her parents, on the other hand, were clearly unable to give her up yet....
 
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