The Many Faces of Anxiety

I had absolutely no idea what anxiety looked like thirty years ago when I became a parent. My only familiarity with anxiety and how it looked was my Mom being a “worry wart” or a friend being unable to get in an airplane without an escort to fly. I thought of anxiety as something few people ever really had and certainly I would never had and never would experience. Therefore, I had no idea how often I would encounter anxiety while raising a family of four children and being a marriage family therapist. Boy, was I ever wrong with a… Continue Reading This Article

Self-Care When Life Falls Apart

Seizures Happen We were at the hospital once again. Another seizure. We were used to the seizures. Our youngest son started having them at two years old. He had 50 to 100 petite mals per day and periodic grand mal seizures. (Or absence seizures and tonic clonic seizures) Only this time – my four year old son’s seizure lasted over forty five minutes. And this time – the whole family felt the tremendous shock and trauma of the seizure. My oldest son locked the door as we waited for the ambulance to arrive. When I asked him what he was… Continue Reading This Article

Why Did My Brain Betray Me?

The Betrayal of The Brain I often hear similar statements from the Wounded Souls who have been through trauma. While the “what happened” is unique for each person, the responses to trauma are very similar. How the brain reacts is not unique, but each individual does not know that yet. Not in the beginning of the process. We begin the unfolding of the story of the trauma. As mentioned in my previous post, “It’s OK To Not Be OK,” the person needs time and space to find the words fitting the event. At first, it may be possible the individual… Continue Reading This Article

It’s OK to NOT be OK

The Beginning of Trauma Recovery I help people recover from trauma. I help people realize it is OK to not be OK. I sit across from men and women on a daily basis. They come in looking for answers. At times, they do not know what the questions are they want or need to ask. All they know is life is not working at the moment. Not like they want it to work – or not like it used to – or not like it ever did. And they are tired. The awareness I have of the shame in the… Continue Reading This Article

The Soul of Grief – Paying Attention to Things As Symbols of Love

transitional objects for grief

The Ring is More Than A Thing – A Symbol of Love I sat at the table with my ever-warm and caring Aunt Waneta – My Dad’s youngest sister. Her eyes had tears in them. She was expressing concern and love towards me, as my father had just passed away the previous Friday. “I just think it is something your Dad would want you to have,” she said. “I’ve already talked to your Mom about it and Betty agrees. Your mom wants you to have your father’s wedding ring if you would like it.” Throughout the years, my Aunt Waneta… Continue Reading This Article

The Soul of Grief – A Grandson Honors The Legacy of His Grandfather

grandfather legacy

When asking friends about what they wanted in a series on The Soul of Grief, I received numerous responses stating, “Real life stories.” People want to hear from others who have walked the walk of the journey of grief and how it has impacted them. Today I have the special privilege to bring you, “A Grandson’s Eulogy” by Eric Mielke. Eric writes about his family honoring his grandfather prior to his Opa’s death. Eric Mielke is a 27-year-old blogger and adventurer extraordinaire. You can find Eric exploring and embracing life  – or just enjoying conversation over a good cup of… Continue Reading This Article

The Soul of Grief – Discovering Coping Skills When Tears of Grief Won’t Stop

tears won't stop

The Inconvenient and Uncontrollable Tears I sat in the back of the funeral service. Crying and crying. I just could not stop the tears from flowing down my cheeks. My friend, the granddaughter of the woman whose memorial it was, looked at me with puzzled eyes as she passed by. Her eyes were clear. I had barely known her grandmother, after all. Why was I crying so insistently? My eyes were red with the tears. I am certain my face was blotching – You know the way your face gets when you cannot suppress the “ugly cry?” I thought for… Continue Reading This Article

The Soul of Grief – What Are Rules About Tears When Grieving

the soul of grief

The Truth About Tears There are many theories regarding the benefit of tears. One of my favorite quotes that reflects my beliefs regarding tears is as follows: “There is a sacredness in tears. They are not the mark of weakness, but of power. They speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues. They are the messengers of overwhelming grief, of deep contrition, and of unspeakable love.” -Washington Irving The value of tears is also expressed in many spiritual texts: “You kept track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle. You have recorded each one in… Continue Reading This Article

The Soul of Grief – 10 Principles To Help Walk Through Traumatic Deaths Consciously

traumatic grief

The grief of a sudden death is one of the most difficult grieving journeys. Grieving the loss a loved one due to an accident or murder is best approached consciously, and with guidance. I don’t like to compare pain. However, there is such righteous anger, shock, dismay, and confusion any time death happens due to these events. The death is complicated, thus making the grieving process complicated. Walking through the cacophony of emotions is debilitating. The agonizing cries of a mother who lost her son to a fishing boat accident still ring through my memory. I recall her stating she… Continue Reading This Article

5 Common Ways Anger Shows Up in Grief

anger in grief

“When tragedy happens, people go into their hearts.When people go into their hearts – They go out of their minds.” You can count on this statement playing out in your grieving journey. The anger and irritability you feel after the numb starts to wear off is sometimes pretty shocking. It just can catch you off guard. Death and near death experiences are so painful. The death of a loved one causes memories (both good and bad) to just come back to life. At the same time you may have to make decisions regarding funeral arrangements or a memorial service, your… Continue Reading This Article