That’s right, this Sunday, December 15th, marks our 1 year BLOGIVERSARY! Holy moly, we can scarcely believe it. Don’t worry if you didn’t get us anything, your tolerance for our long-winded, occasionally snarky, occasionally emotional, always typo laden posts means more than any eCard you could have sent us.
In celebration of our blogiversary we are going to forgo our usual Friday Favorites and instead highlight a favorite post from each month of our first year. We wrote some of our favorite posts in the first few months when only about 10 people were paying attention (thank you 10 people, we love you!), so we’re excited for the opportunity to dust off some of the old content. Throughout the week we’ll also be sharing some of our runner-up favorites on Facebook and Twitter, so keep an eye out if you want to walk with us down memory lane.
Okay here we go, starting with December 2012…
Recently we’ve reposted a lot of our early content about dealing with the holidays, but we’ve yet to highlight this post about keeping family traditions alive in new ways. In our practical plan for dealing with grief during the holidays we discuss how some family traditions will have to change after a death.
At first this change in tradition seems hard because it highlights the many ways our lives have changed since the death. On second glance though, one can often find comfort in being able to adapt and preserve elements of old traditions in the face of profound change; just as we as grievers must learn to live differently.
As if it weren’t hard enough for adults to navigate grief, many of us also have to figure out how to support children affected by the loss. How to explain death to children and how to support grieving children are some of the most head scratching questions adults are faced with; and unfortunately many grown-up’s don’t realize the importance of a child’s developmental stage.
In this post we break down typical grief responses by age, so you (the grown up) can make appropriate choices about language and interventions. We recommend this post to any adult trying to support a grieving child.
Here Litsa introduces mindfulness and makes the point that it can be accessible to anyone (not just all or nothing, new age-y, raw-food lovin’ people). She notes one can learn a lot from Buddhist concepts without becoming a Buddhist. One can learn about mindfulness without moving to an ashram. Within these teachings are interesting concepts that regular people can apply to every day life by choosing the ideas and techniques that speak to them.
We’ve had quite a few comments on our site lately about people comparing grief and how it feels for one to have their grief compared to another’s. One of our guest authors, Nick Frye, noted in a post that “…every relationship is unique and therefore we all have our own unique experience with grief…After all, even a well-meaning friend who has had a parallel loss does not know how you feel. What we all do share is the experience of a broken heart because we lost someone/thing we love.” We couldn’t have agreed with Nick more and in this post we break down the impossibility and futility of comparing grief between both similar and dis-similar losses.
I’m sure regular readers won’t be surprised to hear this is a hallmark post for us. I know it sounds weird, but the idea that grief makes you completely and utterly crazy is a concept that Litsa and I hold near and dear to our hearts.
It’s a fact that allows us to find levity and (if you ask us) justifies all the angry, sad, shocked, irritable, forgetful, numb, tired, guilty, depressed, erratic, frustrated, and derranged stuff we do, say, and feel after a loss. True story.
I was watching a Sesame Street clip the other day when my dad commented that kids don’t watch Sesame Street anymore. I was like “Whaaa???? Yes they do!”, and he was like, “Do YOUR kids ever watch it?”, and I was like, “What? No! But that’s beside the point!!” Then I felt sad because I knew he was right, my kids would rather watch porous pants wearing pineapple dwellers than Sesame Street any day. I accept any and all blame.
Anyway! Sesame Street is still awesome for a lot of reasons, but number one on our list is because they have sensitively, consistently, and comprehensively covered death; which is a ‘don’t go there’ topic that ranks up there with [insert taboo topic here]
This is one of my favorite posts ever because LETS BE HONEST sometimes sulking feels darn good. Sad music, crappy television, a good book, comfortable sweat pants – how could you go wrong?
We are big proponents of seeking professional grief support and know that it can be tremendously helpful when struggling after a loss. Unfortunately, just like with any new relationship, things don’t always work out the way we expect. Finding a therapist can be tough and sometimes the relationship just doesn’t work out – you don’t connect, you aren’t getting what you want or need out of the relationship, you need to see other people. Sometimes things go well for a while, until suddenly they don’t.
Knowing if you should break up with your grief counselor can be tough, and navigating the breakup can be awkward. No one tells you how to break up with your therapist! In this post we go through a few of the circumstances that may have you contemplating a split and we break down a few considerations.
You know we have a thing for Harry Potter around here, right? So it should come as no surprise that the adventures of Harry, Ron, and Hermione would serve as inspiration for a
completely unsubstantiated and fictional grief model that totally makes sense.
The Harry Potter grief model theorizes that in order to defeat grief, individuals must overcome the 8 (some people say 7, but we say 8) horcruxes of grief. Don’t worry if you’re not a huge Harry Potter fan, we provide explanations so anyone can understand the thoery without a Harry Potter decoder ring.
An adolescent’s grief can be impacted by any number of things including but not limited to, their unique relationship with the individual, how the individual died, their support system, past experiences with death, and their own unique strengths and weaknesses when it comes to dealing with stress, adversity, and high emotion. Grownups seeking to support an adolescent should try to remember that a wide range of responses are considered ‘normal’ and there’s no one formula for providing support.
All that being said, teenagers come with their own set of grief considerations -their search for identity, differences in how they express emotions, dependency on grownups, and impulsivity are a few factors this post delves into.
Bad news, you still have to eat when you’re grieving. This is made even more complicated when the cook of the family has died and you are left to figure out how to feel yourself, or worse, your kids I mean, it is one thing to starve yourself and subsist on Big Macs (not that we recommend that!) but it is even worse when you have kids at your table.
Maybe you just don’t feel like cooking or maybe you can’t stand the thought of cooking for just yourself (when you used to cook for 2). We know, grief makes you feel like crap; but adding to that by not eating well will only make you feel worse. So before you give up on the idea of cooking, consider some of the tips below to get in the kitchen and cooking after a death.
This post was recent enough that some of you may have seen it, but just the same it was a useful one so we are going to highlight it. There are over 200 euphemisms related to death and dying and we’re all guilty of using them at one time or another. There are many adults who prefer euphemism to some of the more unpleasant words associated with death and dying, however this post illustrates why it is never a good idea to use euphemism when talking to a child about death.
And here we are, back at December 2103. Thank you for celebrating with us today. We are truly grateful for you and for all our readers. When we set out to write this blog our goal was to help a handful of people; and now it seems like our community grows by a few more each day. We know you might only need to walk with us for a short while, but just the same we are grateful to be your companion when things are good and when things are bad. True story.
Hey, we’ve got at least another years worth of good stuff to talk about. Subscribe to receive our posts straight to your e-mail inbox.