Tag Archives: Grief

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Death Midwife

What is a Death Midwife?

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I am excited to announce I have finally completed all three training levels to become a Death Midwife! I realized after my Dad died how much I didn’t understand about death and the dying process. Mainly because, like grief, we rarely talk about it. As a result, I often felt helpless and uninformed on what my Dad was going through and the many of the choices we were asked to make. I really wanted to take this training to be able to talk about death so I could be better prepared as well as have discussions with my family.

WHAT IS A DEATH MIDWIFE?

A Death Midwife includes the roles of death doula, spiritual counselor, end-of-life caregiver, home funeral guide, funeral planner and celebrant. Death Midwives guide and support individuals and their families through all three stages of the dying process:

BEFORE… upon notice of terminal diagnosis or life-limiting illness

DURING…active dying and death, and

AFTER…unexpected death, final rites, burial or cremation, funeral or memorial and bereavement.

“A Death Midwife shepherds individuals toward a conscious dying experience; guides loved ones in after-death care of the body and empowers families to create personal and deeply meaningful funerals at home.” Sacred Crossings

SERVICES PROVIDED

Death Midwife services include but are not limited to:

– In-home, hospital, or nursing home visits with the family and their loved-one

– Detailed reporting to next-of-kin unable to visit

– Emergency room support after unexpected death

– Holding space while life-support is discontinued

– Support with stillborn and infant death and bringing baby home for a home funeral

– Finding a local, reputable hospice to meet a loved-ones needs

– Assistance with completing advance directives for health care and death care

– Assistance with fulfilling final wishes, healing relationships, and putting things in order

– Spiritual support including guided imagery, meditations, etc. to help alleviate anxiety and suffering

– Guidance with completing the life-review and legacy project

– Help with writing an autobiography or creating a video-biography as a legacy to loved one

– Guidance with after death care of the body for a home vigil and funeral

– Coordinating with funeral home for transportation and cremation

– Assistance with funeral planning

– Celebrant to officiate funerals, memorials and graveside services

I will keep you posted as we begin to incorporate some of these services into our offerings.

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Sending you love, comfort and peace!


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Master Grief Coach

What is a Certified Master Grief Coach?

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I am so excited to announce that I am now a Certified Master Grief Coach through Cathy Cheshire, LLC. Profoundly evolving after extreme suffering following the death of her two sons, Cathy Cheshire left a business career in healthcare to support other grievers. In honor of her sons, she became an author, speaker, grief coach and the founder of the “Master Grief Coach” training program with a certification option. She has diverse education from traditional and progressive professionals with varied grief expertise including the areas of thought, emotion, mindfulness, and resilience. Cathy received her BS degree from Arizona State University. Her book is titled, “Thriving After the Death of a Child.”

Certification as a Master Grief Coach refers to the confirmation of competent skills by online testing and oral assessment. Proficient knowledge of the “Understanding Grief and Healing” and “Master Grief Coaching” training modules are required for certification. Training hours included 7 one-on-one sessions with a Cathy who ensures you have a complete understanding of the program material.

ABOUT THE PROGRAM

It is natural for even resilient grievers to have trouble focusing, sleeping, eating, and to feel a roller coaster of emotions. Preoccupation with loss, fearing feelings, prolonged isolation, and overindulgence in distractions are signs of someone who may benefit from support. Knowledgeable about grief expert research, a Certified Master Grief Coach empowers others to heal in a way that works best for them. Clients decide their grief goals and as a coach, I can now support a client in achieving them.

Example Grief Goals

Understanding grief and healing

Resolving individual specific grief challenges

Talking with someone who can empathize

Reducing stress and anxiety

Understanding common spiritual experiences

HOW A MASTER GRIEF COACH CAN HELP

The death of a loved one or major life change can affect every area of our life. The more we focus on what we value, the less negative emotions are triggered. Knowledgeable about best practices for every major area of life, a Certified Master Grief Coach can empower someone to gain control over their life. They decide their life goals and a coach helps them move past limiting beliefs to find hope again.

Major Area Life Goals

Life action planning

Thought, emotion, and mindfulness

Organization and productivity

Life mystery

Critical tasks completed

Physical health

Financial planning

Loving relationships

Fun and pleasure

Career and helping others

Dreams achieved

I will continue to keep you updated as my own Master Grief Coaching Program becomes an official offering!

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Sending you love, comfort and peace!


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Holiday Gifts

Holiday Gifts for Grievers

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It’s often hard to know what to buy for someone who is grieving during the Holidays. In fact, many grievers don’t feel like celebrating the Holidays at all. I know I didn’t after my loved ones died.

It can mean everything to a griever to have a family, friend or community member reach out to them during the Holidays. The simplest of gestures can make all the difference in the world. Here are some gift ideas especially for those who have experienced a loss.

Please know I am not a paid affiliate for any of these small businesses or authors.

I just love what they have to offer!

MEMORIAL GIFTS

Little Kittens – They absolutely love creating one-of-a-kind treasures, whether that be keepsake memory items, or warm wooly mittens.  Jan thoroughly enjoys sitting down in front of her sewing machine and beginning a new project after dreaming up an awesome design in her mind. She has been seeing since she was 8 years old. She is somewhat of a “perfectionist” and strive to make each item to the best of her ability and slightly different from everything else out there.

GIFT BOXES

The Compassionate Courier – It is through their compassion for the grieving, that The Compassionate Courier was born. It is their desire to bring comfort and hope to doorsteps around the world, reminding others that they are not alone and are remembered during their darkest times. Each box will also contain a personal message from the founders of The Compassionate Courier. Each note of encouragement will include uplifting thoughts, quotes, tips and suggestions on navigating through the unfamiliar journey of grief.

Solace Club – A SolaceClub box is a care package filled with items to help someone grieving the loss of a loved one. After the funeral when everyone has gone home, the SolaceClub box is more than a condolence card or flowers. It is a reminder that others love them and want them to have the tools to help with grief. Our boxes are designed for those grieving the death of a loved one (e.g., mother, father, sister, husband, wife, partner) and who need some support, self-care and tips on coping along the way.

Laurel Box – Offers thoughtfully hand curated gift boxes designed to nourish a woman’s heart after loss.  If a friend of yours has recently lost a loved one, you can rest assured that our boxes are designed to nourish a woman’s heart after a loss.  If you are currently walking through loss, it is our deep hope that the box you receive makes you feel loved and remembered.  We know that no gift can ever replace the people we have lost, but we hope the prayers we pour over those touched by our company can be felt when you open a laurelbox.

Boxes of Hope – Created by a mother/daughter team working together to fill peoples lives with hope, by delivering stylish and lovingly curated boxes to people facing difficulties. Their hope is that people all over the world will receive these special gifts and be reminded that they are loved, braver than they think they are, and that there are people out there rooting for them.

JEWELRY

Heavensbook Angels – When the founder & owner of Heavensbook Angel’s son passed away in 2007, she chose to honor his memory through grief support, authoring and jewelry design. Their line of jewelry is among the first to bring death, grief, and loss to the retail space.

Rachelle-isms – Started out in 2010 with making gifts for family. In 2014, a lot of new changes were brought to the business by bringing meaning and even healing/comfort to others. Sharing her story reached many who were looking for a voice to the pain of child-loss. She encourages other to tell their story through her jewelry.

UNIQUE GIFTS

The Death Deck – Play the new party game that lets you explore a topic we’re all obsessed with but often afraid to discuss. There are 112 cards with a mix of multiple choice and open-ended questions guaranteed to spark lively discussion around the topic of death. Play with partners to try and predict each other’s answers, or all together in a group. No matter how you play, you’ll learn some new things about your friends, your family, and likely yourself.


BOOKS

 

Grief Dialogues: The Book by 61 Authors on Grief and Loss

Like it’s predecessor Just a Little More Time, this book harnesses the power of words and images to combat grief.  Sometimes the stories are funny.  Sometimes hopeful.  Sometimes inspiring.  Always heartfelt, honest, and reflective as the 61 writers and artists move through their grief and remind us that in order to grieve we must first love.

A Widow’s Awakening by Maryanne Pope

Do you believe in soul mates? What if the death of your soul mate meant the birth of your life-long dream? A Widow’s Awakening is a fictional account based on the true story of a young woman’s struggle to come to terms with the death of her police officer husband who died while investigating a breaking and entering complaint. Engaging, powerful, heart-wrenching, and at times humorous, this honest look at the first year of a widow’s grief captures the immense difficulty of learning how to accept the unacceptable while transforming loss into positive change–and is a testament to the resilience of the human spirit.

Just Be – How My Stillborn Son Taught Me to Surrender by Lindsay Gibson

Heartbreak from the loss of a loved one or from loss of innocence traumatizes the soul, but what if the loss of your baby who was born still could lead you to forgive someone who brutally harmed you and nearly left you for dead? With raw emotion, humor, and courage, Lindsay tells her story of thirteen years of darkness and the power of forgiveness that finally set her free.


Surviving My First Year of Child Loss edited by Nathalie Himmelrich

The death of a baby, whether through miscarriage, stillbirth or neonatal loss, or the death of an older child, is the worst experience a parent can endure. Parents often don’t know how – or if – they will survive such an earth-shattering event. This book includes twenty-six heart-wrenchingly honest essays by parents who convey their personal challenges and the ways they coped during the first twelve months after losing a child.


Digging For The Light by Annah Elizabeth

Annah Elizabeth always knew she wanted to marry, to be a mom, and that she wanted to give birth to those babies before she turned thirty. This book is a conversation that transports readers through a story that is often heartbreaking, sometimes humorous, and always filled with a fierce sense of hope. Following the unexpected death of her firstborn, miscarriages, a six-week psychiatric stay for severe depression, and the discovery that her best friend and her husband were having an affair, Annah Elizabeth knew one thing: She didn’t want to spend a lifetime in mourning. And the way she saw it, she had two choices: She was going to die. Or she was going to live…


Be Gentle With Me I am Grieving by Robin Chodak

Robin understands grief due to many losses. She talks about her journey to recovery after the suicide of her former husband. Through her own suffering she has been transformed and found purpose and happiness in her life. Her book will help you understand your grief better. She is a testimony that is possible to live and love life after loss. She wants that for you too!


Grief Diaries Book Anthology by Various Authors

Storytelling is a powerful tool. Each book in the Grief Diaries series features stories by ordinary people who have walked your journey and offer comfort, understanding, and hope. Titles include: Loss of a Pet, Loss of a Child, Loss of a Sibling, Loss of Health, Loss of a Spouse, Loss of a Parent, Loss By Suicide, Through the Eyes of Men, Hello From Heaven, Project Cold Case and many more.

 

Grief Reiki by Sharon Ehlers

How do you move forward after a loss when your mind, body and soul feel broken? Award-winning author Sharon Ehlers found herself on this very quest after losing two dear friends to suicide within a two-year period. A journey through self discovery using her own expertise as a Reiki Master and Certified Grief Recovery Specialist resulted in Sharon’s trademarked integrative approach Grief Reiki®.

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Sending you love, comfort and peace!


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