So delighted! At last, my devotional, Getting Out of Bed in the Morning: Reflections of Comfort in Heartache, is out! This book has opened many doors for me to meet with others who are in pain due to the many sorrows experienced in life. I am speaking on the book's themes (forgiveness, anguish, anger, praise) on radio shows and at groups around my state and the country. I wrote this devotional from my own anguish after losing my four-year-old son Daniel to cancer.
I feel many Christians tend to brush over the impact loss has on our lives. Acknowledging a person's pain is key in order to be able to walk with him/her in their sorrow.
How do you help those you know who are suffering now with loss (financial, health, death of a loved one, broken relationships) in their lives? What have you found to be effective when you have been the one having a tough time getting out of bed in the morning?
Jeana thats all they need to know you are there and not knowing what to say is the best.
I found the one word I learnt to hate was sorry.
I think we say "I'm sorry to hear about the death of your mom," etc. because we want to say something. There are so many we come in contact with that we might now know well, but when they tell us about a recent death, we want to say something. We might not know them well enough to say, "I'll be here for you." (Especially if we have just met them.) I come in contact with many bereaved who hear about me via online grief groups and my books, so I use the familiar, "So sorry to hear . . ." As I get to know people better (if the relationship evolves to something deeper) then I add that I ache with them that they have to be on this sorrowful journey.
These last few years have been rough, the loss of a grandchild, grandmother, another grandchild in kidney failure and personal illness. I have found I tend to pull away from everything and everyone. This last year I have found digging in Gods word has helped me face each day.
Michelle, you have had a lot of heartache. I know how easy it is to want to pull away. I'm glad for the solace and strength you've found in God's Word.
I always thought when mum died I would want to be left alone but in reality I craved company but on my terms. I found I had to get out cos staying home was driving me crazy. I would check the phone to see who rang and no phone calls which made me feel glad I got out. I fully understand about the wanting to be alone but not alone. There were people who were really helpful and still are and others who tend to use the cliches like you know shes in a better place, or keep trying to tell me mum is better off and in heaven. I knew all that and was happy for her but it didn't stop the pain I was feeling. I had no idea what grief was and had people say oh we cant tell you how you should feel you just have to go through. I found this so condescending in the end cos I didn't know what I was meant to be feeling or that things like not sleeping and feeling so cold and numb were all normal but no one really answered questions til I saw my dr and she listened and let me know it was all normal and gave some suggestions for the sleeping etc. I also was told it takes time which started getting annoying also. I didn't get the phone calls or visits from here but did get support from online friends. I do have a couple of people I could talk to which helped but so many didn't really want to hear or they tend not to be helpful. I have learnt dont ask someone how they are doing and if they say I am fine dont then say no how are you really feeling. This was one thing I struggled with as often I was at a point I couldn't talk anymore and just wanted to be left alone so would say doing ok.
I had no issue getting out of bed as I just couldn't sleep. I found I had to get out and ended up walking. I found I needed to be out and the benefit is I am fitter than I have been in so long and I am still walking. The other thing Mum always said Saturday can be the loneliest day of the week and I found that so true. people are with families and I often felt so alone and needing contact but no knowing who I could ring. I found yesterday hard cos I wasn't feeling 100% and being a public holiday here and I found I was climbing the walls and finally visited someone and we played games.
To help someone let them know you are there for them, that if they need a friend or to ring someone you are available or willing to do things with them but also let them lead the conversation. Let them know they can contact you. I had some say we knew you would call us if you needed to. But I didn't know they were happy for me to call I needed to be told I could.
One thing I struggled with was hugs i am not a huggy person and everyone suddenly wanted to hug me even people I didn't really know well and I would say please don't but most disrespected my request and it was so awkward. Its ok to offer a hug but if the person says no please respect them.
Thanks for joining in and sharing here, Jenny. It seems like you have learned a lot about grief and what works for you.
Books are available at Amazon. Currently, Getting Out of Bed is a top-Kindle seller! That makes me happy. http://www.amazon.com/Getting-Out-Bed-Morning-ebook/dp/B00BEZUK64/
I can't wait to get my hands on this book. I am going through a new loss of my own. I am going through the empty nest and...the loss of my health. I always thought that LOSS was for death or divorce but LOSS is so much more. I am learning that it is an emotion and it is real.
So many losses in life . . . When some are grouped together and occur at the same time, it can be overwhelming! Please take good care of yourself, Beth. Be gentle as you navigate all you are faced with. I hope you can get a copy of Getting Out of Bed in the Morning and that it will bring you comfort.