The Grief Helpline Companion Workbook
This work book was written as a companion to the Grief Helpline for the very purpose of helping people to heal after a loss. Loss is a common reality for everyone. Grief is the common result.
Learning how to recover from loss can be one of the most difficult issues a person will ever face. Grief floods us with emotions and questions that demand to be answered. But, few of us are ever taught how to heal and truly live again.
This workbook guides the reader along by discussing the thoughts and feelings experienced immediately following a loss, and how to get to
the other side of Grief. Take time each day and complete these exercises to learn more about how to live with grief. Also, be sure to write in your
reflections at the end of each week.
It is designed to be used as a tool in the healing process. By reading, meditating, and journaling on the subjects contained within, the reader can journey along the path one day at a time, to a new, joy filled life. While there are several books and programs that relate to grief, this workbook is unique.
But for my readers, who are often those who are grieving a loss of some kind on this day, it can feel difficult to really find anything that we could be grateful for when we are in such pain. And this is a place where I have been in the past, too.
But I’d like you to know that just because you are hurting so deeply from the death of someone close, or the divorce, or the financial loss, or whatever you are dealing with, it is acceptable to still feel times of joy.
Sometimes we won’t allow ourselves to delve into the joy bucket for fear of how others might judge us (“How can she look so happy when her father just died?”). Or when we ourselves feel guilty because we’re not grieving properly.
Well I’m here to tell you that there is no ‘right’ way to grieve. There is no ‘right’ timing when grief is finished. There is no ‘right’ way you can please all your family and friends and I don’t want you to try, because, quite frankly, if they are putting guilt on you, nothing you do will make them happy anyway. It’s time for them to get their own life and build their own happiness after someone’s death.
The only person’s grief you are responsible for is your own. You can help soothe another family member and listen to them, but ultimately it’s their journey and they will undoubtedly walk it in a different manner and timing than you, but that’s just fine. We aren’t all the same and we don’t all grieve the same as another family member.
So on this Thanksgiving, take some time to value what you do have in your life. Honor the great memories you shared with your loved one who is no longer here. Share those memories with those whom you will spend this day…aloud of course.
And even if you think it will be painful to even bring up their name at dinner, it probably will be and tears may be shed and, guess what, it’s absolutely ok. And, yes, even if it’s been a dozen years, holidays can be hard thinking how you’d really love for them to be sitting at the table next to you just one more time.
So shed the tears and raise a glass to their memory. Talk about them, share what makes your life great at this point in your life. Share how they shaped your life for the better.
And mostly realize just how far you have come in your journey. You are still moving forward, you are still moving toward your dreams, and you can still find things to be grateful for.
Right now, you may feel like the scattered
pieces of a broken puzzle.
Honor that feeling, but also take comfort in knowing that the pieces of a puzzle can be reshuffled, rearranged, and pieced together to form a new picture.
As you learn to create a new reality for yourself,
temper your expectations with compassion and gentleness.
Slowly, gently, I have begun to focus on my loved one’s life—not the death—and that has made all the difference.