Saturday

Getting Through The Holidays When You Grieve

 ONLY GONE FROM YOUR SIGHT: 

A PERSONAL APPROACH TO HUMAN GRIEF & LOSS

 

Chapter 38 

HOLIDAYS & ANNIVERSARIES 

 

Every grieving mother knows how old her child would be today. You probably know how old I would be now and how long I’ve been gone. The heart remembers everything. You are connected to me by the love that we share, a love that tugs at your heartstrings at special times. You might find yourself thinking about me continuously one day. You just can’t get me out of your mind! Maybe you even have a dream of me or receive an extraordinary sign. You look at the calendar and realize that it is the anniversary of my passing or my birthday. The heart remembers everything. 

 

“One day without him...” 

“He was still here this time last week.” 

“I’ve made it through the first two weeks.” 

“I can’t believe she’s been gone a month.” 

“It’s been 2 months, 2 days, 7 hours, 35 minutes.” 

“3 months have passed now.” 

“4 months.” 

“5 months...152 days” 

“I’m coming up on 6 months.” 

“It’s my first holiday alone.” 

“This would have been her birthday.” 

 

We’ve been through one round of all the anniversaries of the heart. 365 days of “first times.” Oh, but it’s still complicated isn’t it? Leaving the first year behind, it’s like we lose that too.

The anniversaries will keep coming. There will be days when you just aren’t feeling so strong. Maybe you go a park or a restaurant where we used to go and even though you might have a new friend with you, you are filled with tears and memories of our days together. It’s okay. Let them come. Those were the days my friend... 

 

Creating new traditions is a very good way to move forward, to honor me and to honor the special days of the year. Sometimes you need to create new traditions for yourself when you are faced with loss---or if you are struggling with family issues and disappointments. 

 

Anniversaries and holidays can be difficult at best when your life feels empty or incomplete. One of the things you can do for yourself during these times is to celebrate the life we shared. Do not mourn my loss. Celebrate my life. Create a lovely altar, light a candle. Say your prayers. Invite me to visit you. Talk to me. Tell me about your hopes and dreams. Reflect on the good times. Tell me you love me over and over again. Soak in the happy times of being blessed by someone in your life who loved you and who loves you still. Someone who taught you the meaning of love, not fear. Celebrate our love. Know that love never dies. 

 

When you are visiting people over the holidays who might not understand what you are going through, take something tangible and subtle with you; something that you can wear or hold in your hand when you are you are longing to be with me instead of them. It's okay to talk about it if it feels like the right thing to do for you. It’s okay to not want to talk about too. Just tell them that. It can also be quite handy to excuse yourself so you can go to bed early. That's okay to a point too. You have a very good reason and you are learning at last to take care of yourself. Balance the holiday and try to stay balanced within yourself as you move forward to the next anniversary without me. 

 

Balance is the key to all healing. Time and support will take care of the rest. 

When you are surrounded by joy and celebration it can actually make you feel worse when you feel worse. If you want to avoid parties and celebrations altogether you can volunteer at a soup kitchen or some other charity event. It often helps one to feel better when they help people less fortunate. You can also opt to stay home, but I will be hoping that one day you will be willing to share the holiday with someone you love and trust. Someone who lets you be you. Go easy on yourself. 

 

"The first of every month would loom ominously. She braced herself every time a new month approached. The August 1 anniversary was tough. Then a funny thing happened. December 1 arrived; sixteen months. The day came and went. On December 2 she realized she had not noticed. She felt guilty at first until she realized it was a sign of her healing. My life was the important thing and our relationship, now on new terms, was all that mattered. She forgot February 1 too! And March! She didn’t remember until after a whole week had passed! Who knew what would happen on April Fool’s Day? Well! She fooled me and remembered! This is how it will happen for you too, in your own time and in your own way."
Return from Rainbow Bridge, Chapter 62


Get a copy of "Only Gone From Your Sight: A Personal Approach to Human Loss & Grief" on Amazon Kindle for FREE until December 22. Our holiday gift to you.  Click HERE! 





Wednesday

Life Is A Highway


"...Our Master can see it all. If you drive down a long curvy road, you don't see the twists and turns until you are on top of them. But when you see things from a higher perspective you can see the whole road and the twists and the turns and the beginning and the end. In Heaven we can see where you are in relation to where you're going and we can make things happen at the intersections of life. We can create the right time and the right place and we can already see how it all ends. We can see the whole story of your life while you live it in little bits and pieces..."  

"Jack McAfghan: Return from Rainbow Bridge"
https://amzn.to/3cPKCAl

Tuesday

Book 8 Ready for Pre-Order!

CLICK HERE TO VIEW ON AMAZON 

I've been busy preparing my next book for publication and I'm happy to report that it's almost done! Scheduled for release June 21! 

My book is based on a true story that happened twenty years ago. I resurrected memories, poetry and journals to give me the backbone for a screenplay that has now become a novel. Seven lives intersect on the US/Mexico border, each impacting another's destiny. Walls are not always made of brick and mortar. Read the love stories and watch the walls of injustice, judgment and insecurity come tumbling down through the strength of the power of love.  

Available for Pre-Order for just 99 cents!  Click the link here to take you to Amazon Kindle (you don't need a Kindle to read the book, you just need the Kindle app on your tablet, phone or computer). You will automatically receive the book as soon as it is released! 

I truly look forward to your reviews and feedback once you've had a chance to read it. Reviews mean everything to me so please consider leaving one on Amazon if you enjoyed the book.   

Then! It's another Jack McAfghan book!  
Stay Tuned, Stay Safe and Thank You for following me!

Love,
Kate

Monday

The Walls Between Us - A Borderland Romance Coming Soon!



"Every seven years Francisco would burn his fields instead of reaping them. "Ash is full of nitrogen which makes the soil rich. It is worth losing the annual crop to allow the next six years to flourish," he would say. "We cannot keep taking from Mother Earth and not replenish her. There will be no minerals left if we keep using her without giving something back to her. It's like a husband who takes and takes from his wife, she will not stay very long!"


Chapter 1, The Walls Between Us Coming June 2020

Tuesday

A Walk In The Rain Turns into an Unexpected Date with Love






It's the anniversary of my crossing. Late this afternoon she went out in the pouring rain. She didn't really know why she went out there, but I think she heard my heart calling her heart. She doesn't always listen she's so busy hearing with her ears and thinking with her head. Humans have to pay attention to that feeling in their gut, in their heart, or they miss a lot. 

She went right to the place where we would sit after a long hike and overlook the wash below. If you've read our book, it's the same place where I sent her the lightning bolt and the hummingbird moth so long ago.  Today as she sat there she was talking with me, tears rolling, but not crying. I covered her with my "signature" goosebumps -- It's as close I can get to hugging her full body from behind. It is always the same. I always send her the same feeling. That's how she know's it's me. She was chilled by the rain, but her back was warm with my love. "I can feel you Jack. I know you're here with me." 

As she spoke to me, she thanked me for all I have done for her and for helping everyone who reads my story. It pleases us so much -- all of us at Rainbow Bridge-- to be able to help so many people work through their grief. Her words made me so happy that I sent a most beautiful amber light that lit up our wash like it was a flood light on a stage set. It was lightning, yes, but it lingered longer than a mere bolt. Like so many miracles from Rainbow Bridge, it can't really be described. As soon as the light came, the thunder rolled from one side of the wash to the other. It rolled long and deep. Then it rolled high above her as it traveled up over the nearby mesa. 

I know she knows the truth. I was the thunder. I was the lightning too. I knew she knew it was me because when she said, "Thank you. Thank you Jack," she was crying because she knew in her heart that it all was my response to her.  

...And the brave mourning dove who usually becomes uneasy with such things and flies away, she remained in the nearby tree and stayed for the whole show. 


So many things can happen when you pay attention... and when you rise to the call.


Save The Trees


A tree drops its seed 
Which creates new life. 
Roots, a trunk and limbs of its own 
Then outstretched leaves 
Which fall in the fall, 
Decay and feed 
The roots and all 
Until one day 
It drops its seed 
And nature starts again. 
Man plants a seed 
On a lawn of grass 
To grow a tree 
For shade, for swing; 
To hide a view. 
It grows and grows 
And drops its leaves 
And man complains 
As he rakes them, bags them; 
Pays to have them hauled away 
In plastic on the curb. 
He waters, rakes, prunes and feeds 
(With chemicals of course) 
Then wonders in the later years 
Why the 'damned tree' 
Begins to die 
After all he's done. 

© 2016 Kate McGahan

Wednesday

"I'll Never Accept This Loss" - ACCEPTANCE - Stage 5

Acceptance is often confused with the notion of being “all right” or “OK” with what has happened. This is not the case. Most people don’t ever feel OK or all right about the loss of a loved one. 



This stage is about accepting the reality that our loved one is physically gone and recognizing that this new reality is the permanent reality. We will never like this reality or make it OK, but eventually, we accept it. We learn to live with it. It is the new norm with which we must learn to live. We must try to live now in a world where our loved one is missing. 

In resisting this new norm, at first many people want to maintain life as it was before a loved one died. In time, through bits and pieces of acceptance, however, we see that we cannot maintain the past intact. It has been forever changed and we must readjust. We must learn to reorganize roles and priorities, re-assign them to others or take them on ourselves. Finding acceptance may be just having more good days than bad ones. 


As we begin to live again and enjoy our life, we often feel that in doing so, we are betraying our loved one. We can never replace what has been lost, but we can make new connections, new meaningful relationships, new inter-dependencies. Instead of denying our feelings, we listen to our needs; we move, we change, we grow, we evolve. We may start to reach out to others and become involved in their lives. We invest in our friendships and in our relationship with ourselves. 



We begin to live again, but we cannot do so until we have given grief its time. Be patient with yourself and those around you. Time and support will help you to heal the wounds of grief. 

Consider reading the Jack McAfghan Trilogy if you cannot find the support you need in the corners of your life. Visit www.katemcgahan.com and sign up for your free book, "It's Not Putting Me Down, It's Lifting Me Up."  Follow Jack on Facebook. Jack is always there to guide, support and love you through the journey. Our story is your story too. Jack's voice is the voice of your beloved. 

Prayers for your journey. 

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