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About MartyT

  • Rank
    Grief Counselor
  • Birthday 02/10/1943

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Profile Information

  • Your gender
  • Location (city, state)
    Sarasota, Florida

Previous Fields

  • Your relationship to the individual who died
    mother, daughter, friend
  • Date of Death
    5/26/67, 9/3078,10/06/93
  • Name/Location of Hospice if they were involved:

Recent Profile Visitors

7,194 profile views
  1. I think you're right, Kay. I also think I should stick to what I know something about
  2. Sad again

    Lainey, my dear, I simply cannot imagine how cheated you must feel, and how disappointed that life seems so unfair. You said you really thought that "since I went through the grief thing nine years ago, I would be able to understand the feelings I'm having now," but being in the midst of grief and understanding grief are two very different things. We may remember well how sick we were when we got the flu a few years ago, and we may understand completely what the symptoms are and be familiar with its course ~ but that does precious little to help us deal with how rotten we are feeling if we have the flu again right NOW. If you need a reminder of what you were feeling when you first joined us in 2010, go back and read some of your earlier posts, and notice the changes you experienced over time. You also acknowledge that these two deaths are different from each other, and that is also true. This loss and the grief that goes with it will be different, too ~ but that does not mean that you won't find effective ways to make it through. You say that the hugs and kisses from your two littlest granddaughters are what keeps you going ~ so for now, take comfort in that, and expose yourself to their uplifting presence as often as you can. Indulge yourself. Discover and do more of whatever brings you comfort, and have faith that you will survive. ♥
  3. Why

    Mary Beth, I'm so sorry that you're feeling this way. Can you say more about what is going on with you? Are you still in touch with your grief counselor? Is there anyone else you know and trust whom you can call? Someone who can sit with you in your pain and listen without judgment to where you are right now? Are you still writing? Can you share with us what's going on in your life right now that's leading you to doubt that you can make it through? You're not alone, you know. Let it out, Mary Beth, and let us in. We're all here for you, holding space for you, caring about you, walking beside you, willing to listen to whatever you need to say . . . ♥ I read this just now and thought of you, Mary Beth. I invite you to read it now, in hopes that it will speak to your hurting heart: An Open Letter to Bereaved Parents and Others by Dr. Joanne Cacciatore
  4. Why

    Sharing: Why? Why Me? Searching for Answers in Grief In Grief: When Faith and God Don't Make Sense
  5. Hi George. My husband has been in the insurance industry for many years. I just shared the contents of your post with him, and he said it sounds as if the issue is with the company that is servicing your mortgage, and not with your insurance company, since the mortgage servicing company is the one who's deciding when and how much to pay the insurance company. Maybe you're climbing the wrong ladder? Just a thought . . .
  6. Affirmation Writing When: Live on Tue, January 23, 5pm – 6pm Pacific Time - 8pm -- 9 pm Eastern Time (then later on demand as a podcast) Note: This webinar is not free. Registration Fee is $50 Description REGISTER | INSTRUCTOR: Harriet Hodgson When you're grieving it's easy to slip into what-if thinking and ongoing guilt. In contrast, affirming yourself with words can lead you forward on the recovery path. This straightforward workshop defines affirmation, gives examples of grief healing affirmations, cites affirmation writing steps, and offers ways to apply affirmations to real life. Affirmation writing isn't complicated, according to Hodgson, and her workshop will get you writing quickly. Writing affirmations can improve your day and change your life.
  7. Why

    Yes, Cookie, for what it's worth, I have had arthroscopic surgery on my knee, and I can tell you that it took at least eight weeks of supervised (and what I considered to be quite intense) physical therapy three days a week plus at-home prescribed exercises before my knee felt any better. I've had a number of surgeries on my bones and joints over the years, and I've found that forcing myself to exercise and to keep walking as much as possible (first with crutches, then on a walker, then with a cane) was the best thing I could do to promote healing and get better. I know it's hard, and I know it hurts ~ and you're most certainly NOT a baby. Certainly "it could be worse" ~ but what difference does that make? This is YOUR body, your knee and your pain, and you've every right to feel whatever you are feeling. ♥
  8. I agree, Kay. Grief is an active process, and we don't have to be passive in the face of it. There are so many tools we can try and things we can do, keeping what works for us and letting go of others. See, for example, our Tools for Healing forum and our Tools for Healing board on Pinterest. ♥
  9. Dear Janka, I am more than willing to do as you ask, but before I do so I'd appreciate your responding to the emails I sent to you earlier.
  10. One breath at a time and therapy sounds like an excellent plan, dear Butch. It's good to "see" you here again. I think you know that we're all pulling for you. Just a few minutes ago I invited Allen to read a wonderful newsletter that included this insightful article, and I hope you will read it, too: Does It Ever Get Easier?
  11. Don’t know what to say.

    Dear Allen, I thought of you and your family when I received this newsletter from Grief Watch in my email this morning. I hope its content speaks to you in a helpful way: Moving Forward ♥
  12. Articles Worth Reading

    From Mark Liebenow via Widower's Grief: Wednesday, January 17, 2018 Dark Night of Grief Part One: Shattered Illusions Many people feel uncomfortable when they’re alone in the darkness, even when they’re standing in their own yard and watching the stars at midnight. It’s as if the darkness can’t be trusted and this is where nasty creatures live. Like Thomas Merton, I find presence and solace watching the stars in the dark hours before dawn. This is when words of inspiration come, and meditation deepens. With grief, however, when the darkness lingered and dawn did not come, I began to feel uneasy. In his book, A Hell of Mercy, Tim Farrington speaks of darkness and the liminal space that swirls us through despair, depression, melancholia, and, sometimes, spiritual growth. There is a long dark night in grief’s journey. It’s not the same as St. John’s dark night of the soul, although they can dovetail. When our life is shattered, when all we have known and believed lies scattered on the floor, it is then that we are open to new dimensions of reality. Because of grief (or some other traumatic event), we find ourselves in a place that can be described as an extended night, as if we have been tossed into the dark winter months of the Arctic Circle where there is no light for months, and only brief glimmers on the distant horizon that quickly disappear. We feel lost, unable to move or get out, with a lethargy that dogs our heels day after day. This edge of despair can linger inside us for years, because we have lived beyond what can be seen. When grief comes, it comes as an avalanche that sweeps away our sources of strength and places of refuge. It dampens the lights that have guided us, leaving the world clothed in dark shadows. Grief strips away many of the illusions we have pasted over life to soften its harshness and make it more palatable. Grief brings clarity of sight. We awaken to reality, both its suffering and its compassion. Grief will challenge our faith to its core, no matter what religious tradition we follow, especially if this is the first death of someone close. It will pull down the belief that if we are faithful, if we keep our part of the bargain, then life will return the favor and we will be happy. While the darkness around us can lead to spiritual growth, it doesn’t automatically lead into St. John’s dark night. That is a step further and, as Tim Farrington says, this is not a step we choose. When death comes to someone we love, a spiritual darkness often settles over us because many religions no longer speak of how to care for someone who is grieving, or how to cope with an out-of-order death. A sudden death. A death due to the violence of others. And because there are no signposts we can grab to hold ourselves in place, we may lose our grip on faith and slide into despair. When we first enter grief’s dark place, we try everything we know to get out. We work harder and longer. We read profound books, and stuff positive thoughts into our pockets and ears. But there comes a point when we realize that nothing we do is working because we still feel broken. It is then that we let go of trying to deflect the pain, let go of our egos, and let grief and God guide us where they will. When we are feeling battered and lost, it is agonizingly difficult to do nothing but wait in the darkness for something unknown to come. But we do, because we have to. Tim: “Grief will never go away, if we’re really paying attention. It’s part of being awake; we love, and we lose those we love to the erosions of time, sickness, and death…. To lose a loved one is to be called to come to genuine terms with that loss, or risk losing touch with that in us which loved.” In time, rather than try to resurrect our old life out of the broken pieces of the past, we begin to create a new life, using what we are discovering about reality and ourselves. We find others in the darkness who are also grieving. As we share, a new community forms, and we help each other bear the sorrow. We are learning the language of the dark landscape, and finding the strength to endure. No longer are we afraid of the darkness or the unknown. Grief’s dark night reveals that only love is important, because love opens our hearts in compassion to ourselves and to others. * In Parts 2 and 3, I will talk about Brené Brown and Mirabai Starr. I have written about the dark world of grief before. These are the links: The Dark Station http://widowersgrief.blogspot.com/2014/07/darkness-and-still.html Dark World Community http://widowersgrief.blogspot.com/2015/09/dark-world-community.html Stone Monastery of Grief http://widowersgrief.blogspot.com/2018/01/stone-monastery-of-grief.html
  13. Don’t know what to say.

    Yes! "Failure to understand and accept these different ways of mourning can result in hurt feelings and conflict between partners and among family members during a very difficult time. Although there is grief work to be done, behaviors can be misinterpreted, needs may be misunderstood, and expectations may not be met." See How We Mourn: Understanding Our Differences ♥
  14. Dear ones, unfortunately, as totally confusing and confounding as it is, not knowing which path to take is part of the normal grief process. In hopes that it will offer some useful insights, I invite you to read Transition after Loss: Tips for Navigating The Neutral Zone ~ including some of the related articles listed at the base. ♥
  15. Articles Worth Reading

    An invitation from Megan Devine, our friend and colleague at Refuge in Grief: WHEN TIME PASSES TOO FAST (& THEY DIDN’T DIE ‘LAST YEAR’ ANYMORE) Somehow, it already feels like the end of January. The new year has only just begun, but it already feels like time is moving too fast. The passage of time really gets to you inside grief. One thing about the New Year I’d forgotten until I was speaking with a client is how, once the year turns over, you can no longer say, “they died last year.” If your person died in 2016, you can no longer answer the question, “how long ago?” by saying “they died last year.” Somehow, that makes them feel even further away. It also plays into that idea that enough time has passed since your loss happened, so you should be “better” by now. These ideas we have about how long grief lasts – they’re so entirely wrong. Because we have a cultural belief system that says grief should be over once you’ve passed that first year mark, most people (including some grievers) think you should be back to normal once that “year of firsts” is done. Nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, year two can be even harder than the first, or differently hard. And when you turn that corner, when you can no longer say “this time last year,” or “they died last year” – it makes it all that more difficult to convey to others how much this loss still hurts. That cultural belief doesn’t just mis-inform those who want to support people they love. It also makes grieving people think they’re somehow failing at grief if they still feel sad in year two. Or year three. Or four. Because we don’t openly talk about grief in this culture, we have a flawed view of what it’s really like. Because we don’t openly talk about grief, we don’t know what’s “normal.” We don’t know how to care for ourselves, or each other. If your person died in 2016, you can no longer answer the question, 'how long ago?' by saying 'they died last year.' Somehow, that makes them feel even further away. My book goes into this cultural mis-understanding in detail, and I love conversations about a sweeping grief revolution. But there’s something even more powerful that will change how we understand grief – and that’s your stories. When we start telling the truth about grief, things change. I often say that writers change the world. Stories change the world. Have you seen our new grief love stories campaign on Instagram? We started by sharing love stories from the Writing Your Grief community, and now, I want to extend the invitation to you. We share a new grief love story every day. We’d love to tell the world about who you’ve lost, and who you are. All the information is at this link, which is where you can submit your story. And if you’d like to learn more about how to help a grieving friend or family member, be sure to check out this overview page for support people. It will direct you to some of the most useful helper content on the site. It’s a great place to begin.