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Prayers – Learning #2 of 5 on to How to Help Others Grieve in Caring Ways

“You are in my thoughts and prayers.” Many of us, especially if we believe in God, often say that phrase when we attempt to comfort someone that has recently lost a loved one. I’ve said it many times. And wrote it in cards to people. And, I hate to but have to confess that I […]

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Open the Door – Learning #1 of 5 on How to Help Others Grieve in Caring Ways

Acceptance is hard.  Acceptance that someone you love has died; will never be walking through that door again.  Acceptance that your life will always be different, from this day forward.  In our household growing up, all time was defined as “before or after Mom died.”  Kind of like when you first become a parent, life […]

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Five Ways to Help Others Grieve in Caring Ways

Heartlinks Grief Center, based in Belleville, Illinois serves all those that need help with their grief journey in Southwestern Illinois.  The staff truly understands how to help others grieve – and caring is central to their mission.  As Valentine’s Day approaches our hearts turn to those we care about.  It’s a special day we set […]

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Count Your Blessings

Blessings.  How do you define blessings?  My internet search found this definition: bless·ing [ˈblesiNG] NOUN God’s favor and protection:  “may God continue to give us his blessing” a prayer asking for God’s favor and protection:  “a pastor gave a blessing as the ship was launched” grace said before or after a meal. a beneficial thing […]

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It Only Takes a Little Faith

Okawville is the town we call home.  It is one of those small towns where people feel safe, where people care about their neighbors and root on the hometown basketball team.  I was pleasantly surprised when we moved back a couple years ago to find lots of activities and groups to join – a community […]

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There is No Control in Grief

On Christmas Eve morning last week Pastor Jeff at St. Peter’s United Church of Christ in Okawville, Illinois, preached a sermon on “The Right Time”. The gist of this timely sermon was that everything that happens, (both those wonderful things and those things we dread), happens at just the time it is destined to.  At […]

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And So, This is Christmas

“Christmas time is here, the most wonderful day of the year,” goes the chorus of the theme song from Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.  One of the TV shows we always watched as a family.  My Mom loved that little-animated cartoon with Burl Ives as the narrator.  And, like most of us, she loved Christmas.  The […]

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Do It Today – Life May Be Short

JUST DO IT. is Nike’s tagline that challenges each of us to act, today.  Now.  Don’t wait, just do it.  Whatever that “It” is for you.  Of course, they want it to involve new shoes, but that’s ok.  The point is right. Just Do It (stylized as JUST DO IT.)[1] is a trademark of shoe […]

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Ways Our Loved Ones Influence Us from The Grave

Heartlinks Grief Center presented the launch of We Lost Her  on November 16th, National Grieving Children’s Day.  It was held at the 4204 Main St. Brewery in Belleville, Illinois.  Heartlinks hosted our “Book and a Brew” and so many people came.  We sold out of books!  The influence to have the first book signing, the […]

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Grief Learnings from We Lost Her

I’ve learned a lot over the years from Heartlinks Grief Center’s Director Diana Cuddeback.  New ways to think about grief and how the process of mourning and grieving can be a blessing.  A time of self-reflection, healing, and growth. As I recently wrote my first book, We Lost Her, Diana helped me to be brave […]

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