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“In between goals is a thing called life that has to be lived and enjoyed.”

~Sid Caeser

“I Know How You Feel”

Guilty.  That’s what I am of this “Never Say These Six Things – Well-Meaning but Hurtful Expressions of Sympathy and What to Say and Do Instead” item I’ll talk about in this post.  I’ve often said to a person standing near their loved one in the funeral home or church, “I lost my Mom many […]

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Never Say These Six Things!

  Well, it’s official.  The Heartlinks Grief Center Speakers Bureau has had our inaugural presentation.  Last Saturday, I had the honor to meet with the Family Hospice of Belleville Volunteer Group where I made the first presentation of what we hope will be many in Southwestern Illinois.  The topic was one a lot of you probably cringe […]

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This Again??

Last week Diana Cuddeback, Director of Heartlinks Grief Center and I attended the National Alliance for Grieving Children (NAGC) Annual Conference in San Antonio, Texas. We were privileged to share Heartlinks journey over the last three years in fund development programs and organizational planning with some of the participants. Those attending the conference were professionals […]

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Asking Permission

Heartlinks Grief Center’s Director, Diana Cuddeback, another volunteer, Mary Woesthaus and I met this week to discuss launching Heartlinks new Speakers Bureau. The purpose of the Speakers Bureau is grounded in Heartlinks’ Strategic Plan Initiative that is aimed at educating the Southwestern Illinois community about grief. The hope is that by opening a dialogue about […]

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Inside Out

The movie Inside Out has five animated characters as the main characters. They are the basic emotions – Disgust, Fear, Anger, Sadness, and Joy. The main character is Joy, she runs the show about a 12-year-old girls emotion. Inside Out starts with Joy in charge, trying hard to keep the girl, named Riley, happy all the […]

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Holidays are Hard

Mother’s Day has always been a hard day for me.  In We Lost Her, the book I recently authored about my Mom’s traumatic death in 1970, I describe my feelings about that special holiday without her in this way: “Mother’s Days have always been the hardest.  Even once we had our two precious children and […]

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Helping Others Grieve and Knowing When to Get Help – Learning #5 of 5

Relaxed. A summer afternoon watching the Springfield Cardinals with the kids 30 years ago. My sister Betty and I were chatting away, paying no attention as the kids rooted on the team. Next thing I know, pain rushes through my arm. “What happened?” is screaming in my head. Our son proudly chases the ball that […]

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Teach our Children Well – The Need to Teach our Children to Grieve

“…the past is just a goodbye.  Teach your children well” is the chorus of one of my favorite Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young songs, “Teach Your Children Well.”  Yes, I know that dates me terribly even though I’m proud of growing up in that world-changing era. As a grandparent now, I still love listening to […]

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Learning #4 of 5 Helping Others Grieve and Respecting Timeframes

The ancient Greeks had two words to describe time.  One was Kronos, from which the English word chronological is derived. It means clock time – time measured by seconds, minutes, hours and years.  Kronos time is gauged by the calendar. It’s fixed, full of deadlines, schedules and in this technology-laden world, annoying beeps and reminders […]

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Keeping Your Loved One Present – Learning #3 of 5 Helping Others Grieve and Ongoing Presence

After our Mom’s tragic death in 1970, we just didn’t talk about her. My six siblings and I each struggled alone and didn’t share how we were feeling. We were all trying so hard to “move on.” We let her fade into the background. Not forgotten, ever, but too painful to be part of our […]

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