Monday, September 30, 2013

Death of a Pet: Breaking the Sad News

Source
Bad news isn't wine. It doesn't improve with age.  ~ Colin Powell

A reader writes: Our beloved Scottie dog, Bailey, died earlier this week, at the age of 15. We gave Bailey to our son Nicholas on his first day of Kindergarten. He will be returning home from college for a visit tomorrow. My husband and I are not really sure how to handle breaking the news to him.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Caregiving and Hospice, September 22 - September 28, 2013

Best selections from Grief Healing's Twitter stream this week:

Outstanding! Ambassadors for Hospice, http://j.mp/1dO8dxg « Caring with Confidence

Book Review: “The Best Care Possible” by Ira Byock, M.D., http://j.mp/193iFBE « SevenPonds Blog

Commonly held myths about end-of-life issues http://j.mp/17cwKdw « Harvard Health Publications

Understanding and Managing Grief, September 22 - September 28, 2013

Best selections from Grief Healing's Twitter stream this week:

ONLINE GRIEF FORUMS: AN IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT http://j.mp/1dPnNsj « Grief Healing Blog

When Does Grief End? http://j.mp/16GsAWU « Fredda Wasserman, Huffington Post

Favorite articles from this week featuring Grief Healing, Huffington Post and The Atlantic, http://wp.me/p2KrvU-1ln « What's Your Grief?

Coping with Pet Loss, September 22 - September 28, 2013

Best selections from Grief Healing's Twitter stream this week:

Lovely! Condolence Letter on the Death of a Pet, http://j.mp/1bGkvtf « Open to Hope

Turning Guilt to Gold: Blue’s Story, http://j.mp/19zQGpB « HowToVetWisdom
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Saturday, September 28, 2013

ONLINE GRIEF FORUMS: AN IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT

ABOUT OUR ONLINE GRIEF DISCUSSION GROUPS

As some of you may know, hospices across the country are experiencing the chilling effects of a combination of unwelcome events (including a nationwide decrease in hospice admissions, increased government scrutiny of hospice programs via audits, cuts in Medicare reimbursement, and pending implementation of the Affordable Care Act). To keep itself financially healthy, Hospice of the Valley has responded by cutting costs wherever possible. In recent days, departments have been reorganized, functions have been consolidated, a number of positions have been eliminated, and a significant number of staff have been let go.

Monday, September 23, 2013

"Am I Going Mad?" ~ Mystical Experiences in Grief


Source
Desire is indeed powerful. It engenders belief. ~ Marcel Proust

Of all the various ways that grief can express itself, perhaps one of the most unsettling is to experience the presence of a lost loved one— days, weeks or months after the death has occurred. When one so dear to you is gone, it can be very hard to accept that the person is really dead.

You may find yourself thinking and dreaming about your loved one much of the time, and it may seem that everything around you is a reminder of the person you have lost. Once in a while you may temporarily forget that your loved one is gone, and you’ll look and listen for him or her—and maybe even think that you’ve seen, heard, smelled or touched the person. Part of you believes your loved one is there, yet the other part of you knows that’s not the case.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Caregiving and Hospice, September 15 - September 21, 2013

Best selections from Grief Healing's Twitter stream this week:

A Fresh Look at End-of-Life Care, http://j.mp/18GsDZA « Health Leaders Media
  
What NOT to do in providing hospice care, http://j.mp/1gI8fGD « The Amateur's Guide to Death and Dying

A Better Way to Die? http://j.mp/18fN3GF « UnfrazzledCare

Continuing With Your Own Life After Another's Life is Over, http://j.mp/1aOTL6M « The Caregiver Space

Being there until the end: A Decade of Goodbye, http://j.mp/1esu9AW « Opinionator, The New York Times

Understanding and Managing Grief, September 15 - September 21, 2013

Best selections from Grief Healing's Twitter stream this week:

Inspiring! Grief: Creating Meaning for Your New Life, Your New Self http://j.mp/1eypIof « Stop Thief: Don't Steal My Grief

Friday Favorites: Grief Articles from This Week, http://j.mp/18GrrFx « What's Your Grief?

Weathering the fog after a suicide, http://j.mp/1aZbKLi « Hello Grief

On the value of Grief support: After the Last Bereavement Gathering, http://j.mp/1fhMHmi « Elaine Mansfield

Parents' anguish turns into mission http://j.mp/15asrRB « The Detroit News Lifestyle

Coping with Pet Loss, September 15 - September 21, 2013

Best selections from Grief Healing's Twitter stream this week:

What to do when you encounter a lost dog or your own lost dog, http://j.mp/187S16r « No Dog About It

Sobering, important post from Dr. Kay: Needing to Vent, http://j.mp/186Rn9m « Speaking for Spot
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Monday, September 16, 2013

Mourning An Abusive Relationship: Suggested Resources

Source
As discussed in earlier posts, mourning the death of a relationship can be especially difficult when colored by a history of physical or emotional abuse. Whether the abuse stemmed from addiction, abandonment, mental illness, dementia or any number of other causes, it can complicate the grief process ~ unless and until it is examined, processed, understood and overcome.

Here are some resources that can help ~ and as always, if you know of any that you'd like to see added to the list, please feel free to leave a comment, below.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Caregiving and Hospice, September 8 - September 14, 2013

Best selections from Grief Healing's Twitter stream this week:

Why docs don’t do death? http://j.mp/14LWmvF « Sunrise Rounds

A beautiful 3-minute video about forgiveness, generosity and gratitude, http://j.mp/164LfeR « Pinterest

Friday Favorites: Suicide Prevention Week Edition, http://j.mp/1db9QVp « What's Your Grief?

Planning a Funeral: Top 3 Things You Should Know, http://j.mp/1g7KCH2 « Living with Dying

What I Did With What I Learned from Caregiving, http://j.mp/15W4VIx « The Caregiver Space

Understanding and Managing Grief, September 8 - September 14, 2013

Best selections from Grief Healing's Twitter stream this week:

Friday Funeral Film: Departures, http://j.mp/1638nuj « A Good Goodbye

Outstanding! Grief Is ...... http://j.mp/162dUlF « Widow's Voice

Wounded Healer: Objectivity in Grief Counseling, http://j.mp/1esi1R9 « It's OK to Die

This Incredible Obituary May Be The Best Thing You Read All Week, http://j.mp/18QrOJF « Huffington Post

911. A Different Anniversary of Loss, http://j.mp/15X08jo « Navigating Grief

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Coping with Pet Loss, September 8 - September 14, 2013

Best selections from Grief Healing's Twitter stream this week:

Struggling with the Euthanasia Decision? Advice, Guidance here: http://eepurl.com/E3P41 « New England Pet Hospice and Home Care

Touching tribute to a darling cat lost earlier today, http://j.mp/1659nOw « Fandom Balladeer

Goodbye, Banjo and thank you, http://j.mp/1geAwUY « Momsense, FLORIDA TODAY

I finally acknowledge my senior dog will die soon, http://j.mp/15YZNDB « Seattle Dog Spot

This is wonderful: Did You Hear about the Bulldog Bark from Beyond? http://j.mp/16kqekr « HowToVetWisdom

Monday, September 9, 2013

Complicated Grief: Mourning an Abusive Mother

Source
It may be hard to play the role of the mourning [daughter] when part of you is saying, ‘Free at last.' ~ Helen Fitzgerald

A reader writes: Two weeks ago, my mother died of metastatic cancer. We had a strained relationship our entire life together. Growing up she could be very cruel to me, and that is what ensued as I tried to care for her. Before her illness, we hadn’t spoken in almost 3 years, but I wanted to be there for her and support her. I forgave her before she died and asked that she forgive me, and I feel a certain amount of closure which we were able to create.

But just when things were going beautifully, it was as if some demonic entity took over her being.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Caregiving and Hospice, September 1 - September 7, 2013

Best selections from Grief Healing's Twitter stream this week:

The Ultimate End-of-Life Plan,  http://j.mp/17GvtLT « The Wall Street Journal

The Difference Between Helping and Enabling a Loved One, http://j.mp/166b81T « AgingCare.com

Children's book helps kids learn about hospice, http://j.mp/15DZTKX « Books Make A Difference

Trends in Cancer Care Near the End of Life, http://j.mp/14xSBYR « Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

What is Hospice Nursing? http://j.mp/18ABc47 « Nursing Crib

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Understanding and Managing Grief, September 1 - September 7, 2013

Best selections from Grief Healing's Twitter stream this week:

Lovely commentary: Death and Dying: Living and Dying in 140 Characters, http://j.mp/17dLzvv « Huffington Post

Two Stages of Grief (for Preschoolers), http://buff.ly/1dHUKti « Mommy Man

Friday Favorites: Grief Articles, http://j.mp/15Bv4GD « What's Your Grief?

Inspiring! Finding My Stride, http://j.mp/15EcdAB « Hello Grief

The Bereavement Counselor: Public Misperception, http://j.mp/14vJvM7 « Pallimed

Coping with Pet Loss, September 1 - September 7, 2013

Best selections from Grief Healing's Twitter stream this week:

Remembering Two Precious Souls, http://j.mp/15DJ2Yt « Grief Healing Blog

Tribute to a Dad and a Dog, http://j.mp/17ORVEv « Afterlife Books

Is Pet Loss Comparable to Loss of a Loved One? http://j.mp/GZocuf « Grief Healing Blog  
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Remembering Two Precious Souls

Sami
The animals are more ancient than us. They were here for millennia before humans surfaced on the earth. Animals are our ancient brothers and sisters. They enjoy a seamless presence – a lyrical unity with the earth. Animals live outside in the wind, in the waters, in the mountains, and in the clay. The knowing of the earth is in them. The Zen-like silence and thereness of the landscape is mirrored in the silence and solitude of animals. Animals know nothing of Freud, Jesus, Buddha, Wall Street, the Pentagon, or the Vatican. They live outside the politics of human intention. Somehow they already inhabit the eternal. ~  John O'Donohue, in Anam Cara: A Book of Celtic Wisdom

It is with deep sorrow and a heavy heart that I report the death of two beloved animal friends who perished in an apartment fire after their guardian had left for work. By the time they were discovered, both had succumbed to smoke inhalation, and it was too late to save them.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Mother Loss: A List of Suggested Resources

Source
A daughter without her mother is a woman broken. It is a loss that turns to arthritis and settles deep into her bones. ~ Kristin Hannah

A colleague writes: I am looking to facilitate a support group for women whose mothers have died. I have a list of books and movies related to this subject, but it seems a little outdated. I was wondering if you had something a little more up-to-date or if you could give me a few books to pass along to the women who are attending the group.

My response: Here is the list of Mother Loss Resources I've compiled for your group ~ and I hope it helps:

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Caregiving and Hospice, August 25 - August 31, 2013

Best selections from Grief Healing's Twitter stream this week:

Aesthetic Experiences at the End of Life, http://j.mp/15IDxLe « Soundscape MusicTherapy

Dementia Books For Children http://j.mp/14Lyb2a « Dementia Journeys

Does my dad have dementia? http://j.mp/1476tyo « Caregiver Stress

Buried in the mounds of your loved one's legal documents? AARP's Amy Goyer offers solutions, http://bit.ly/1dkU7pm « The Organized Caregiver on YouTube

Positive interaction for Calm Caregiving, http://j.mp/15mpCgz « Eleanor Silverberg

Understanding and Managing Grief, August 25 - August 31, 2013

Best selections from Grief Healing's Twitter stream this week:

Well said! "Grief: I Want To Be Seen, I Want To Be Heard but I Don't Need To Be Fixed," http://j.mp/18tg7am « Stop Thief: Don't Steal My Grief

Friday Favorites: Grief Articles, http://j.mp/175F8ac « What's Your Grief?

Funny and sad and wonderful: Corn Nuts, http://j.mp/1foilLT  « Widow's Voice

Voices of Experience: Delayed Grief, http://j.mp/KQxtWn « Grief Healing Blog

Wonderful idea! Write a Legacy Letter Today! http://j.mp/15BZ882 « Huffington Post