enna

Contributor
  • Content count

    4,589
  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won

    6

2 Followers

About enna

  • Rank
    Advanced Member
  • Birthday 12/05/1942

Previous Fields

  • Your relationship to the individual who died
    wife
  • Date of Death
    May 25, 2012
  • Name/Location of Hospice if they were involved:
    Hospice of the Valley - Phoenix

Profile Information

  • Your gender
    Female
  • Location (city, state)
    Goodyear, AZ
  • Interests
    reading, meditating, being outdoors, PINNING, listening to eclectic music, watching old movies, volunteering, and doing my color pencil art
  1. http://www.whatsyourgrief.com/stress-in-grief/
  2. Wednesday, March 22, 2017 Grieving For Society The Call to be Creative When I was swimming in the minestrone of grief, one of the realities that helped me cope was the sameness of life outside my house. Everyday I could mindlessly commute to work, do my job, come home, watch TV, and sleep. Then 9/11 happened, a few months after my wife died, and my grief was swept into the larger grief of the world. I had no sanctuary from death. Because I didn’t have cable, even TV was no longer a refuge because of its unrelenting coverage of the terror and destruction. What do we do when it’s society we grieve when its fabric is being torn apart? What happens when we no longer trust our institutions or the people running them to do what’s right? Those who grieve can tell when people act like they want to comfort them, but who really don’t care. “Your wife died so young! Such a tragedy. Could you hand me the sack of potatoes?” We learn to detect the false fronts that people present and we’re able to spot the brazen, poppycock promises of the flim-flam politicians, the nithering nabobs of negativity who want to stuff people into tidy boxes of “us” versus “them.” Life is messier than simple agendas. The world is more complex than two-step solutions. They pull the veil of fear over our compassion for others When we don’t know the people in our neighborhood, when we aren’t helping to take care of each other, we become people who look out only for ourselves. We forget who we were. We need artists of truth who stand up in the face of the diatribes of hate: - painters who continue to reach into the darkness and bring back the light. - musicians who play the songs of protest and hope. - writers who create the stories of courage and heart. - storytellers who fire up our imaginations because we are not limited by what we see. - solitaries and mystics who dream the deep resonance of souls. We are all creative and compassionate in our own ways, and we have a responsibility. Turlough O’Carolan, the blind Celtic harpist, was asked in the early 1700s why he composed songs of joy in the midst of such dark times in Ireland. He said that when it is the darkest, that is when people need to be reminded that the dawn will come and the sad times end. Our flame still burns, my friends. Today’s darkness will not put it out. Posted by Mark Liebenow
  3. This is not a new article but it showed up in my inbox! "I am not asking how many items are on your to-do list, nor asking how many items are in your inbox. I want to know how your heart is doing, at this very moment. Tell me. Tell me your heart is joyous, tell me your heart is aching, tell me your heart is sad, tell me your heart craves a human touch. Examine your own heart, explore your soul, and then tell me something about your heart and your soul." http://www.onbeing.org/blog/the-disease-of-being-busy/
  4. Patty, My heart just aches for you. I wish I could be there for you physically but I can't as so many others can't. I hope you feel our collective arms around you. I am so very sorry you are going through this. You must remember that you are doing the best you can. I cannot take your hurt away but I can tell you that we are here for you. Anne
  5. For Some Things, There Are No Wrong Seasons BY PARKER J. PALMER (@PARKERJPALMER), COLUMNIST I don’t know anyone who hasn’t had at least one “hurricane” in his or her life — a destructive personal experience that seems beyond redemption at the time. In this poem, Mary Oliver does what she does so well, drawing lessons from nature that can keep hope alive even during our darkest days. In 2004, a tornado ripped through our neighborhood in Madison, Wisconsin, damaging houses and toppling many old trees. No one was hurt, but property damage was extensive. At the time, I was going through my third major bout of clinical depression. I found it nearly unbearable to look at our yard, where we had lost a lovely maple and a towering white pine — the devastation “out there” mirrored so closely what was going on “in here.” But slowly, very slowly, the still-standing trees began to recover, “pushing new leaves from their stubbed ends.” And slowly, very slowly, a new life began to grow in me. So for me, this poem evokes deep feeling. It reminds me of hard times and of the fact that eventually, I was able to reclaim hope. Today I read Mary Oliver’s closing lines as a sort of prayer for all of us: “For some things / there are no wrong seasons. / Which is what I dream of for me.” “Hurricane” by Mary Oliver It didn’t behave like anything you had ever imagined. The wind tore at the trees, the rain fell for days slant and hard. The back of the hand to everything. I watched the trees bow and their leaves fall and crawl back into the earth. As though, that was that. This was one hurricane I lived through, the other one was of a different sort, and lasted longer. Then I felt my own leaves giving up and falling. The back of the hand to everything. But listen now to what happened to the actual trees; toward the end of that summer they pushed new leaves from their stubbed limbs. It was the wrong season, yes, but they couldn’t stop. They looked like telephone poles and didn’t care. And after the leaves came blossoms. For some things there are no wrong seasons. Which is what I dream of for me.
  6. The Prayer ~ Fountain of Dubai. Best to view full screen.
  7. This is a tough one, Maryann. I understand your thought in having another thread. I must admit, I was one when in my early grief I read only the loss of spouse thread for a very long time. Later, I started to read other threads. I never go to some of the specific threads and I’m afraid I’d miss your posts if we were to have yet another thread for Sudden Loss. A loss is a loss and I find it helpful to see what others are thinking. That is why I believe there are so many who post in the Loss of Spouse thread. There is a separate thread now for young people who have lost someone and I do not read there. I think we miss something if we become too specific. Anyway, that is what I think. Anne
  8. Grief Makes You Crazy http://www.whatsyourgrief.com/grief-makes-you-crazy2/ I’m afraid I’ve got some bad news for you…grief makes you crazy. I suppose that may be a bit of an exaggeration. In reality, it only makes you feel crazy. In the beginning, you feel totally out of sorts – like lash out at everyone, cry over everything, wear the same sweatpants for a week insane. Then over time you only feel a bit odd every now and then – like that time you refused to throw away your dead mother’s old hairbrush or when you started crying in the middle of the Target sock aisle over some random grief trigger. No? Just me? Let’s move on then. Fortunately, I also have good news — when it comes to grief, crazy is the new normal. It looks different on everyone because we all experience grief in our own way, but on some level, we all struggle to understand ourselves and the world around us in the face of profound loss. Think about it – it makes total sense. Whether the loss was sudden or you were able to anticipate it, as soon as you understood and accepted that someone you love was dead or dying you began the grueling work of grieving. If ever a rationale for temporary insanity was needed, one could certainly be found among the range of reactions and emotions associated with grief and loss – shock, numbness, sadness, despair, loneliness, isolation, difficulty concentrating, forgetfulness, irritability, anger, increased or decreased appetite, fatigue or sleeplessness, guilt, regret, depression, anxiety, crying, headaches, weakness, aches, pains, yearning, worry, frustration, detachment, isolation, questioning faith – to name a few. Understandably, many will find it hard to acclimate to these emotions. One day you’re walking along like normal and the next day you feel like an alien has invaded your body; your actions and reactions have become totally unpredictable and confusing. In search of something familiar you look to your primary support system, your family and friends, but they seem changed as well; some avoid you, some dote on you, some are grieving in ways you don’t understand, and some are critical of the way you are handling things. Everyone is searching for the new normal. The first few weeks are foggy. You wake up each morning thinking maybe it was all a bad dream and you muddle through the day trying to make sense of life without your loved one. Just when you start to get a grip (or not) you are forced to step back into your pre-grief life. It seems absurd that the world would keep moving in the face of your tragedy, but it has. Sadly most grievers can’t abandon their duties for long – parent, employee, bill payer, pants wearer – you now have to figure out how to continue to exist in the roles that have been yours since before the death. Alas, that is not all. You must also incorporate new roles and duties, the ones you inherited when your loved one died – mowing the lawn, balancing the household budget, single parenting, closing old bank accounts, dealing with insurance, taking in grandchildren. God never gives you more than you can bear? We’re seriously testing that theory. Sometimes even more disorienting is the emptiness felt by those who have fewer responsibilities as a result of the loss. Perhaps you have spent the past year dealing with treatments and prescriptions, appointments, prayers, and hospice. Now that’s no longer necessary and a life put on hold to be a caregiver must be restarted. Or perhaps you’re a parent whose life was previously made colorful by a child and fast paced by the duties of parenting. Now you find yourself waking up in the morning to rush through the before school routine, only to realize there’s no one to hurry out of bed or call to breakfast. Life is forever changed and things feel meaningless, gray, and empty. This is when you really start to feel crazy (you’re not). Friends don’t know what to say to you anymore. You are supposed to be back to work, school, the PTA, but you don’t feel the same. You’re worried you are alienating people by talking about your loved one and the death. You’re confused about your purpose. Everything you knew about life has changed. You’re questioning your faith and life’s meaning. You’re wondering if you are supposed to be getting better and you can no longer see the world in color. We here at ‘What’s Your Grief’ like to talk about a condition we call ‘Temporarily unable to see rainbows’. Have you ever noticed that many of the resources, articles, books, and materials created to help people who are grieving use images of people staring off at sunsets, standing on a beach, or gazing at the clouds? These images inevitably lead Litsa and me to a conversation that goes something like this… Eleanor: You know, my grief never looked anything like that. Litsa: Yeah my grief didn’t look like that either. Eleanor: As a matter of fact, my grief would not have been impressed with that sunset at all. Litsa: Mine either. My grief would probably have wanted to punch that sunset in the face. The irony is, when you are in the throws of grief you may really struggle to find the beauty and the joy in life and it may be quite unlikely that you would stop and admire the beauty of a rainbow or the vastness of an ocean. Those who cannot relate to these images begin to worry, what’s wrong with me that I don’t have such a zen perspective? The inability to derive joy from things that were once pleasurable can feel a lot like depression and it can be frightening. Don’t worry you’re still not crazy. These are normal feelings. I know because I’ve experienced my own grief and I know because I’ve heard hundreds of other grievers talk about the same types of experiences. (If you’re worried that you are actually experiencing a psychological disorder like depression, anxiety, or PTSD – read this and this and this) You’ve probably heard people say, ‘the first year is the hardest’, this is sometimes true. Quite often, the second year is no picnic either, but at some point, things should get easier. The intense and unrelenting distress of acute grief will be replaced by less frequent moments of sadness, anger, and frustration. You will still have bad days, but you will know things are getting better when those days are outnumbered by ‘okay’ days. This does not mean you are ‘getting over it’, moving on, or forgetting. An important part of healing is discovering the role your loved one will play in your life after their death. Of course at first, you hold on very tight, afraid if you let go your loved one will disappear completely. You hold on to items (not crazy), you leave rooms untouched (not crazy), you pay their cell phone bill so you can continue to hear their voice on their voicemail (not crazy). These things are not crazy and you may continue to do some of them forever, but some you will eventually let go of as your grip slowly loosens and you realize that nothing short of amnesia could make you really let go. And slowly…slowly…the faded colors of life become more vibrant. The world unthaws and you start to find beauty peeking through in places you would never have expected it. Your season of grief has left you weary but stronger and as you walk out onto the sunlit path you glance back as the form of the person you used to disappear. You know you will never be the same and you begin to accept that you must integrate your loved one and your experiences and continue to live…a little bit wary, a little bit wise, and a little bit crazy
  9. http://myemail.constantcontact.com/Daily-Meditation--An-Honest-Being-With.html?soid=1011221485028&aid=UKeZho0b7P8
  10. I agree with what you say, Laura. I believe that your dad is and always will be with you. It is a little strange because we have to experience them differently now but they are as real to us today as they were when they were physically present in our lives. I am so glad you got the tires for the car. Good for you. Now if you take a trip down to where I live I won't have to worry about you. I believe Lena will keep you grounded. She is such a perfect soul ~ in my eyes. I'm glad you like the poem. It is a favorite of mine. It's on my Pinterest site. ps ~ don't do too much thinking about your dad being so far away ~ he is right in your heart. Anyway, that's what I think. 💜
  11. Kay, I think your first link and mine are the same. I tried mine and it is working for me.
  12. Finch, I am sorry you are having rough days and experiencing guilt and self-doubt. It is normal when we are grieving. Early on in my grief, I found this post by Marty on her Grief Healing Blog to be helpful to me. The links following the article are helpful too. http://www.griefhealingblog.com/2012/12/grief-and-burden-of-guilt.html
  13. Encountering Grief: A 10-Minute Guided Meditation with Joan Halifax “May I accept my sadness knowing that I am not my sadness.” At the end of her interview with Krista Tippett at the Chautauqua Institution in New York on July 11, 2012, Zen abbot Joan Halifax led the audience through this “guided meditation on encountering grief — grief as something ordinary, part of life and humanity.” Please download it and share with friends and family.
  14. Laura, I knew that I had lost what I was before Jim died and remembered reading the link Marty sent above. It took me a while to find a new purpose in my life and to accept how things are today. Maybe this is where you are since the loss of your dad. You are finding a different purpose to your life and I believe your dad is with you and maybe even directing you. Your art and your gift of playing your cello give you purpose. I believe we all need to have a purpose in our lives. Who you used to be before your dad died has changed. You are still you but you have a different drive. I am so glad you are focusing on your art. You are so talented. Perhaps this is just a more focused you. You asked what all this means ~ I think it means that you are transitioning into the same person you always have been only now your path is clearer. And I’m sure your sweet Lena will continue to lead you in the direction of caring for those in need by visiting with those who are not able to get out and about. Get new tires. I think it’s a message from your dad. He is always with you and would want you to be safe. Anyway, that is what I believe. ps ~ I'm still reading links Marty has suggested for all of us. I have learned from reading about all these life changes. The picture reminded me that our loved ones are always with us. Hugs, Anne
  15. Thinking of you today, Laura, as you remember your dad.