Holiday grief – two words that, when placed together, have the power to bring tears, fear, anger, pain, sadness, love, and a host of other responses. Knowing the power and effect of those two words, if you’re grieving, how do you deal with holiday grief? (more…)
Archive for the ‘Emotions’ Category
This one should be pretty easy to figure out. The ‘O’ word that hits grievers is a common reaction to grief. (more…)
What is the ‘I’ word you never expected with grief? Is it ‘indecision?’ No, that’s not surprising. So many things changed along with your loss – so indecision on your part is not unexpected. How about being ‘incapacitated?’ Well, you certainly may feel weakened or powerless in the face of your loss, but that’s not unexpected either. (more…)
For once, let’s forget about dancing around the bush – or being politically correct. Let’s agree not to sweep the truth under the rug and stay silent. If you’ve faced a major loss, you know the truth. Grief is hard.
Even grief professionals are sometimes surprised and overwhelmed when they face a profound personal loss. (more…)
Grief is a formidable force—and when it hits you directly, it holds the power to take you to your knees. What can you do? How do you stand back up when grief knocks you down?
Caution! Does toxic thinking seem to tag along with you? If so, what difference does it make?
Even if you are besieged by toxic thinking, it’s only ‘thoughts’ – right? What harm can there be in examining something in your mind, even if you are off track? (more…)
Are quiet and solitude friends or enemies during grief? Sometimes we don’t recognize the things that help versus those that hurt us. And at times, things that are the most natural (and seem best) work against our healing. As in most circumstances, too much of a good thing can be bad. (more…)
Apart from the sheer and utter pain of grief, I believe the rest of it is not what we expect. To be completely honest, until grief came crashing down on me, I’m not sure I had ever even given a thought to it – certainly not a serious thought. And I imagine most people fall into the same category as me. That was nearly seventeen years ago. Looking back, there were so many things I wish I’d known about grief. Here are a few for you to consider … (more…)
People have asked me this question enough times that I thought it deserved some attention: “Are Christians supposed to grieve?” Confusion even leads some Christians to feel guilty when they do grieve and to question the strength of their faith.
Let’s set the record straight up front. (more…)
Max and Molly were inseparable. They spent their entire lives together – until Molly became sick with an incurable form of cancer. Soon afterward we had to put her to sleep. Then Max was alone, without his sister, for the first time. And surprisingly, Max our cat taught me something about grief.
Grief is tough – there’s no doubt about it. But don’t ever think you are powerless over your journey or your life. At the end of the day, what are you focusing on? Ask yourself the question. It’s important. Your answer may well determine not only if you will still be standing, but whether you’ll survive or thrive.
At first glance, a number of characteristics could be used to describe the way ‘grief’ operates, and none of them produces an effect consistent with the words ‘refuge’ or ‘sanctuary.’ The very nature of this process that leads us toward healing when we choose to enter into it is the reason everybody needs a sanctuary during grief.
Grief crashes upon you like a wave. It bounces you around and twists you inside out. Grief sends your emotions into a tailspin, and up and down like a roller coaster, until you’re emotionally spent. Grief is unruly, messy, and disorderly. You’ll go forward and then backward. At times, you’ll question your sanity.
I recently discovered a quote in a treasured book by Sarah Young, and I love how she describes hope. Sarah says, “Hope is a golden cord connecting you to heaven. This cord helps you hold your head up high, even when multiple trials are buffeting you.”
I have my own picture of hope. I like to think of hope as part our DNA. I see it as a key element of our internal make-up, just like the cells of our bodies, yet it’s deeper than that. I envision hope as a real but invisible link, devised and engineered by God, that ties us to Him—an unmistakable connection that nudges us to go on when we’re down; that whispers to us when we stray; that tugs (and tugs) at our hearts when we need to listen; that throws up road signs for us to see when we’re lost; and that points out everyday miracles to us when we need encouragement.
Last week brought terror and heartache to people across our country, but our collective pain and grief are only a shadow of the pain and grief felt by victims whose lives were directly touched by the tragedies in Boston, MA and West, TX. My heart aches for each of these people and their families … for the way their lives have been forever changed and for the unbelievable pain they face over the next weeks, months, and years as they work through their grief and learn to accept (and adjust to) the changes inflicted on their lives because of their losses. When tragedy and grief devastate you, what do you do?