My Blog

Pets Can Help Plug the Hole in Your Grief Filled Heart

There is a shocked silence of the soul after a spouse’s death. You stand frozen, looking down at your bare feet where a thousand shards of your former, whole life lay scattered on the floor. You wonder how you will manage to find a path to safety, clean up the mess and then figure out [...]

By |May 11, 2021|Uncategorized|

The Short List of His Things I Kept After He Died

Sentimentality is an individual preference.  I have a friend who sees love embedded into each trinket ever given to her by anyone, no matter how junky, whereas I appreciate the thought but don’t feel compelled to keep things others give me.  Things do not remind me of people.  This mindset applied after my husband died [...]

By |April 29, 2021|Messages for Those Who Grieve|

What I Know About Death and Regret

I learned the hard way about the sort of regret that can accompany a death.  Three weeks before my high school graduation my mom suffered a massive heart attack, crumpled and died.  I came home from a lacrosse game to find a police car in our driveway, the ambulance having already taken away her lifeless [...]

By |April 23, 2021|Messages for Those Who Grieve|

What To Say When Someone is Grieving

Grief is exhausting.  Part of that is being on the receiving end of comments by other people who have no idea what they are talking about.  Though they may be trying to be kind or offer wisdom, their words can be insensitive, rude or even toxic.  Sometimes all you can do is walk away.  It [...]

By |April 15, 2021|Messages for Those Who Grieve|

When The Miracle Doesn’t Come

During a church worship service we watched a video that told a remarkable story.  A pregnant couple learned horrible news at their first ultrasound:  their baby appeared to have severe deformities. Specialists in nearby Philadelphia were consulted and more tests administered but the situation went from bad to worse. If their baby managed to survive [...]

By |April 8, 2021|Messages for Those Who Grieve|

Strategies for Getting Through Your Worst Time of Day

Imagine traveling to a strange land where, for some inexplicable reason, your travel partner has permanently disappeared.  You are anxious and bewildered to find yourself alone.  In addition to being abandoned emotionally you realize that your resources have now been halved.  Every aspect of your journey moving forward is affected by your status as a [...]

By |April 1, 2021|Messages for Those Who Grieve|

The Anniversary of His Death:  A Few Thoughts

Though our stories are unique, you came here because your ending was the same as mine.  Precious One, I am so sorry for your loss.  I realize you have a day you remember with a heavy heart - the anniversary of your husband’s death.  How can you face that day when it appears on your [...]

By |March 22, 2021|Messages for Those Who Grieve|

Getting Help For Prolonged Grief

After Mark died I felt isolated and alone.  My children were in grades 4, 8 and 10 so they were at school during the day.  The friends who stood by us throughout Mark’s illness had returned to their own lives.  I wasn’t working then and had little to occupy my hours.  I sat at the [...]

By |March 22, 2021|Messages for Those Who Grieve, Uncategorized|

Let’s Talk About Grief Triggers. 

When my husband died, I shuffled through those first few months as if someone had added 30 years to my birth certificate overnight.  Even small excursions outside my front door into the land of the living could be emotionally exhausting.  But necessary.  I wasn’t working at the time and my three children attended school.  Most [...]

By |March 17, 2021|Messages for Those Who Grieve|

Kindness Is Like Sunlight

My succulent provided a small reminder of how we all long for light, stretch toward goodness & kindness and reach for that which is life affirming. My prayer today is to reflect those qualities in whatever way I can for those placed in my path.

By |March 15, 2021|Messages of Encouragement|

Let Your Sparkle Be Evident to All

On a chilly December day, I went for a walk along the promenade adjacent to Beach Street in Cape May, New Jersey. The town was deserted. I passed hundreds of benches but this was the only one decorated for the season. It stood out despite the pewter skies because it was glittery and fun. I [...]

By |March 15, 2021|Messages of Encouragement|

What If Everyone Gave Just A Little?

After preparing batter for a dozen muffins I began to scoop it into the pan, but ran out before all the cups were filled. By taking a small contribution from those that had enough, I was able to get a full 12 muffins. Had I not done so, the first 10 might have come out [...]

By |March 15, 2021|Messages of Encouragement|

Giving A Meaningful Gift for Christmas

Everyone knows that Christmas song with the refrain: FA la la la la la, la la la... It occurred to me that the first syllable "FA" is made up of two letters.  F for forgive and A for apologize. Then comes the la la la part. When our tongues get ahead of our brains and [...]

By |March 15, 2021|Messages of Encouragement|

Why You Should Step Through This Door

This is my front door. I try to make it welcoming as if to say “Good things inside!” But sometimes life offers us unexpected doorways into opportunities. Perhaps they do not seem to be what our rational selves think is best at the time. There may be valid reasons for doubting whether to step through. [...]

By |March 15, 2021|Messages of Encouragement|

Yeses and Nos from 2020

I awoke this morning to a soft percussion dousing my roof. How fitting for 2020 to end and 2021 to begin with a cleansing rain. (Image by E. H. Shepard, illustrator of Winnie the Pooh). This is a day of reflection. I look back, recalling some of my favorite yeses and one life changing no [...]

By |March 15, 2021|Messages of Encouragement|

Words Matter. What Do Yours Say?

A few hours ago, after the vote confirming Joe Biden’s election was finally certified, Barry C. Black, the Senate chaplain, said a prayer in the chamber that acknowledged the violence. “These tragedies have reminded us that words matter and that the power of life and death is in the tongue,” he said. May we consider [...]

By |March 15, 2021|Messages of Encouragement|

Don’t Let Your Relationships Wilt

Simple neglect can devastate a plant. This beauty lives in the corner of a room I enter frequently. Yet often my mind is on my own agenda so I fail to notice when Peace Lilly begins to wilt, begging for a drink of water. Fortunately this time I caught my omission before it was too [...]

By |March 15, 2021|Messages of Encouragement|

What I Learned From A Chihuahua

My hair stylist has a chihuahua named Lulu. Lulu and I are friends but she still barks non-stop every time I arrive. This is our routine. She approaches me shaking uncontrollably, her tail tucked between her legs. She wants to be held but still has anxiety when I pick her up. I hold her gently [...]

By |March 15, 2021|Messages of Encouragement|

What My Shoes Taught Me About Social Media

The other day I was writing about my shoe collection. Naturally I thought to include a photograph, but of course I had in mind a curated photograph like the sort I see on lifestyle blog posts. I definitely didn’t want a real photo of my shoes lined up the way they actually sit. Opening the [...]

By |March 15, 2021|Messages of Encouragement|
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