Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Wednesday's Woe - No Grief Relief or The "Five Stages" of Secondary Trauma or How NOT to Comfort a Grieving Mother

Wednesday's Woe

No Grief Relief


The "Five Stages" of Secondary Trauma


How NOT to Comfort a Grieving Mother

Hamstrung by grief,
We grasp for relief...
Some folks around
Run aground;
They cannot help
What they can't see...
Invisible grief.

They live in denial
Leaving us in a pile...

It makes us mad
But leaves us sad.
They disregard
What is too hard

(They can't see* me...
It hurts you see!)
with attitudes of a seeming complicity:

"We've plans of course!
Don't shoot a dead horse!"


Implying a similar trivializing ilk:
"Stop crying over spilled milk!"


"Stick around to watch us fuss,
'Don't use God to lord over us!'"


"Want comfort? Come here!
As we've no time to dry a tear!")

It makes them too sad
Which leaves them mad.

We don't want to beg,
We, the thrown away dreg…

We bear the cross
For our child-loss.
It's ours alone,
Ours to atone.

God comes alongside...
For our child died!
He can see*;
He answers our plea.
God's Child died too;
He will comfort you.

Death tears us apart...
He heals shattered hearts**.

If all others fail to come alongside,
The LORD our God will always provide.

"It's a Rocky Road!

"These are the five stages of Kubler-Robbins
Have some ice cream."

~Amy Marash

They lend no pittance ~
We come to acceptance...

And a thankfulness, that in God's economy,
He's not ignorant of such complicity;
He turns on its head their dissimulation when He said,
"Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted"!***


So she called the name of the LORD who spoke to 

her, "You are 'God who sees,' because I have truly 

seen the One who looks after me."

Genesis 16:13 ISV

The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. 

~Psalms 34-18

The High and Lofty One lives forever, and His name is holy. This is what He says: I live in a high and holy place. But I am with those who are crushed and humble. I will renew the spirit of those who are humble and the courage of those who are crushed.

~Isaiah 57:15 GWT


"Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted."

Matthew 5:4 NASB

Thanks so much to cancer survivor, Amy Marash from her blog "Cancer Is So Funny," for the graphics from her clever art work, created by her to help her cope!*


*The National Cancer Institute says,

Cancer Survivors Discover the Power of Blogging

Ann Silberman was diagnosed with cancer in August 2009. Two weeks later, she started writing Breast Cancer? But Doctor...I Hate Pink Exit Disclaimer, a blog that puts a lighter spin on her struggle with breast cancer.
A cartoon by cancer blogger Amy MarashAmy Marash uploads cartoons to her blog, Cancer Is So Funny, to share information with other cancer patients.
“I am able to take myself out of treatment and uncomfortable situations by thinking about how I’m going to write about it, or by looking for the humor in a situation for my readers,” Silberman said. “By being able to write about cancer for other people, I find that I am able to focus on the positives rather than the negatives, because that is what I want my readers to do.”

Nancy Morgan, director of the Arts and Humanities Program at the Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center at Georgetown University, affirmed the power of blogging for patients.

"“The people I encounter at Lombardi who blog about their cancer are very much empowered by their ability to articulate thoughts and feelings about cancer and to link with others,” Morgan said. “One person’s courage to write inspires another to express their feelings. The relief that comes from self expression is palpable.”

In a study published in The Oncologist in 2008, Morgan and her colleagues found that patients reported feeling better after completing an expressive writing exercise.

“Post surveys and subsequent interviews identified a significant correlation between those who felt the writing changed the way they thought about cancer and improved physical quality of life,” Morgan said.

Amy Marash was referred to Morgan after telling her onocologist she wanted to draw cartoons to share information with other cancer patients. Morgan gave her a sketchbook, and Marash began drawing the cartoons with ballpoint pens, adding color with markers, and then uploading her work to her blog, Cancer Is So Funny Exit Disclaimer, after perfecting the sketches in Photoshop...

Each of the women has developed a community with her readers. “There are times the disease or treatment gets me down,” Maluta said. “I blog about how I’m feeling and/or what I am experiencing, and before you know it, someone is sending me an encouraging comment or e-mail. These few words of encouragement really lift my spirits. To be honest, I don’t know where I’d be without my blogging family.”

See for full article.


Thank you for the Shattered Hearts graphic goes to
~Anntoinette McFadden ~Book of Psalms ~Pinterest

Bible Translations Used:

GSW = GOD'S WORD® Translation

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Tuesday's Trust - The Power of Weakness

When you think that you're 
losing the battle...
Just remember that 
with Christ,
the battle is
--- already won.

 Tuesday's Trust

The Power of Weakness

How many of us feel we are losing the battle?

I Know Very Often I Do! 

This message I speak not only to you... It is a message my own heart needs to hear. 

Over and over. . .

(All of my posts in fact are messages to my war-torn heart, just as I hope they are to yours...)

In a world that touts strength, what are we to make of our weakness?

In a world that says, "Move On," "Just Do It!" who are we to wait on God amidst our abject weakness?

In a culture that says, "You need to have a plan," what are we to do when all "our" plans are shot?

Ephesians 6:10-13,16-18 (NASB):

10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might. 
11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil.
 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm….

16 (I)n addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 
17 And take THE HELMET OF SALVATION, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
18 With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints,

In a world that values life and strength, what are we to make of Jesus' subjecting Himself to death, even death on a cross, and crying out at His most vulnerable moment, 

"My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?"

(Matthew 27:46, Mark 15:34)

Yes, if you're like me, we are broken; it feels we have no strength left.  

And yet, God comes TO the broken-hearted. His very presence IS our strength.

17The righteous cry, and the LORD hears And delivers them out of all their troubles. 

18The LORD is near to the brokenhearted
And saves those who are crushed in spirit. 

19Many are the afflictions of the righteous, But the LORD delivers him out of them all.…

~Psalm 34:17-19 NASB

And Jesus, on that merciless cross, before breathing some of His last suffocating breaths, declares, 

"It is Finished!" 

His mightiest work was done when His body was at its weakest. 

He fought the enemy on that cross, and won for us Victory over Death. 

He won for our child Victory over Death! 

It was Jesus that declared, 

"The person who believes in Me will live… even though s/he dies."

Jesus told her, "I am the resurrection and the life. The person who believes in me, even though he dies, will live."

~John 11:25 ISV

Jesus told her, "I am the resurrection and the life. Anyone who believes in me will live, even after dying."

~John 11:25 NLT

God knew how to move Heaven and earth for our child to get our child from this earth with all its seductions and traps of the enemy
into His glorious Heaven surrounded forever by her Father's Love 

Does He not know how to help us as well?

The most important battle of our lives, as parents, has been fought and won when our precious child enters into God's presence to live eternally with HIM.

When we look to Jesus and depend on HIM, and teach our children to look to Jesus and depend on HIM, it is IN HIM, not our own strength, that our salvation is won. 

It is by FAITH we are saved, "NOT OF WORKS lest any man should boast." 

So why are we so obsessed by "works," or the lack thereof? Apart from God, we can do nothing.  
If we lean on God, cry out for His help, He can do anything through us, weakened though we may be!

8 For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God;
9 not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.
~Ephesian 2:8-9 (NASB)

For by grace are you saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
Not of works, lest any man should boast.
~Ephesian 2:8-9 (NKJV 2000)

Our weakness does not matter! What matters is our putting all of our trust in our LORD, and HE does the work No Man can do in his own strength. 

So trusting HIM, EVEN in our weakness, we, like our child in her own weakness, can watch as our God fights our battles, our most important battles, FOR us.

If our Father, despite our own weakness, got our precious child to Heaven, can He not also fight any of the battles we face each day? 

Our weakness is not the point; it is what we allow God's Spirit to do IN our weakness that is important.

Remember when Satan taunts you with any of your worst fears when you are at your most vulnerable, Jesus declared from His most weakened state upon the cross, 

"It is finished!"  

Rest in Him and His work for you.


"Jesus loves me, this I know,
For the Bible tells me so,
Little ones to Him belong,
WE are weak but He is strong.

"Yes, Jesus loves me,
Yes, Jesus loves me,
Yes, Jesus loves me,
The Bible tells me so."

How many times have we sung this song?

Do we yet believe it?

God's love, His love through His Son, is almost too amazing to believe, truly believe!
But it is real. 

And we really need it. 

May we open our hearts to receive it!



When our little 2 1/2 year old granddaughter spent the night with us last night, she called me into "her room" with tears in her eyes, unable as she was to get to sleep. She asked me, rather implored me:

"Can you read to me about 'Jejus'?"

 When she did, the LORD of the Heavens came down to minister to this tiny, little vulnerable child. 

Her strength was not the issue.  

His strength that poured out in His love for her was what mattered.  

Her heart cried out; our LORD heard her cry. 

May we too "read about 'Jejus,'" (this same Jesus who died on that cross for us because He loves us so much) looking to HIM, seeking HIM, and trusting HIM to fight our battles and pour out His healing love into our broken hearts!

This child who is a wee baby, who can barely pronounce Jesus' name, already has the love of God poured into her heart that even at age 2 1/2, she knows she can call on Him!  

Out of the mouth of babes!

May we too have the courage of this precious child to cry out to Him. 

As He describes His great love for us in Psalm 18 below, may He split the Heavens to come down to us!

Psalm 18:4-19 (NIV):

4The cords of death entangled me;
the torrents of destruction overwhelmed me.
5The cords of the grave coiled around me;
the snares of death confronted me.
6In my distress I called to the Lord;
I cried to my God for help.
From his temple he heard my voice;
my cry came before him, into his ears.
7The earth trembled and quaked,
and the foundations of the mountains shook;
they trembled because he was angry.
8Smoke rose from his nostrils;
consuming fire came from his mouth,
burning coals blazed out of it.
9He parted the heavens and came down;
dark clouds were under his feet.
10He mounted the cherubim and flew;
he soared on the wings of the wind.
11He made darkness his covering, his canopy around him—
the dark rain clouds of the sky.
12Out of the brightness of his presence clouds advanced,
with hailstones and bolts of lightning.
13The Lord thundered from heaven;
the voice of the Most High resounded.d
14He shot his arrows and scattered the enemy,
with great bolts of lightning he routed them.
15The valleys of the sea were exposed
and the foundations of the earth laid bare
at your rebuke, Lord,
at the blast of breath from your nostrils.
16He reached down from on high and took hold of me;
he drew me out of deep waters.
17He rescued me from my powerful enemy,
from my foes, who were too strong for me.
18They confronted me in the day of my disaster,
but the Lord was my support.
19He brought me out into a spacious place;
he rescued me because he delighted in me.

"The Battle is already won" graphic, thanks to  
Spiritually Uplifting     Lauren     ~Pinterest

All other graphics, thanks to 

2012- Love and Loss on Facebook

NKJV 2000 = King James 2000 Bible

Monday, April 28, 2014

Mother's Mourning Ministry - One Sweet Day ~Mariah Carey & Boyz II Men

When I Lost You

I wish I could see you one more time
come walking through the door
But I know that is impossible
I will hear your voice no more.
I know you can feel my tears
and you don't want me to cry,
Yet my heart is broken 
because I can't understand
why someone so precious had to die.
I pray that God will give me strength
and somehow get me through
As I struggle with this heartache
that came when I lost you.


Mother's Mourning Ministry

One Sweet Day

~Mariah Carey & Boyz II Men

One Sweet Day

~Mariah Carey & Boyz II Men 

Sorry, I never told you, all I wanted to say.
Now it's too late to hold you
'Cause you've flown away, so far away.

Never, had I imagined, yeah, living without your smile.
Feelin' and knowing you hear me,
It keeps me alive. Alive!

And I know you're shining down on me from Heaven,
Like so many friends we've lost along the way,
And I know eventually we'll be together (together)
One Sweet Day.

(Picture a little scene from Heaven)

Darling, I never showed you, (I never showed you)
Assumed you'd always be there (always be there) (I thought you'd always be there.)
I took your presence for granted. (… for granted)
But I always cared (But I always cared)
And I miss the love we shared.

And I know you're shining down on me from Heaven.
Like so many friends we've lost along the way (along the way)
And I know eventually we'll be together (I know I know) (We'll be together)
One Sweet Day.

(Picture a little scene from Heaven) (Oh, oh)

Although, the sun will never shine the same, 
I'll always look to a brighter day (Yeah, yeah)

Yeah, Lord, I know, when I lay me down to sleep,
You will always listen, as I pray!

And I know you're shining down on me from Heaven,
Like so many friends we've lost along the way, (Like so many)
And I know eventually we'll be together (together, Yeah)
One Sweet Day.

And I know you're shining down on me from Heaven, (I'll see you eventually)
Like so many friends we've lost along the way,
And I know eventually we'll be together (together, Yes we will…)
One Sweet Day (One Sweet Day)

Sorry, I Never told you (Ooo Ooo Ooo Ooo), all I wanted to say...

Graphic, thanks to "Grieving Mothers" on FB ~B.J. Karrer

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Saturday's Sayings - When "Life Takes What Matters," Are We to... "Let Go" and "Move On," or "Hold On in a New Way"?

Saturday's Sayings

When "Life Takes What Matters,"

Are We to...

"Let Go" and "Move On," 

or "Hold On in a New Way"?





"He whose hand formed us knows how to put us back together when life's losses have left us in pieces. When we've been caught in the rain that 'falls on the just and the unjust,' He will bring us through. 

"He is the great Healer. He is unequaled at creating something from nothing. He even knows how to bring life from death. So certainly we can trust Him with our pain our loss, our brokenness and our very lives."

~When Life Takes What Matters

Graphics, thanks to
2012 - Love and Loss/FB

Bottom graphic from book by Lenzkes, Susan: When Life Takes What Matters

Friday, April 25, 2014

Friday's Faith - The Importance of Pain

Friday's Faith

The Importance of Pain

Our pain drives us to our

Our pain longs for a 

Our pain longs for a touch of

Our pain never lets us

Our crushing pain drives us
closer to our God.

Our pain reminds us of 
our love...

Our pain represents
our child...

Our pain draws us to the 
embrace of our Lord.

Our pain culminates in tears that
cleanse, comfort, and heal.

Our pain makes us 
more human.

Our pain makes us 
more tender.

Our pain makes us
more compassionate.

Our pain reminds us of 
R.e.a.l.l.y M.a.t.t.e.r.s.


"Beauty remains, even in misfortune. If you just look for it, you discover more and more happiness. . . .  
"A person who has courage and faith will never die in misery." 

~Anne Frank, Tuesday, March 7, 1944

Poem - Our Pain ~Angie Bennett Prince - April 25, 2014

Picture by Saatchi Online Artist Loui Jover; Drawing, "peace" 
thanks to,
Art   Sara Lusk   on Pinterest

Anne Frank quote, from The Diary of a Young Girl, The Definitive Edition (New York: Bantam, 1997), p. 208.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Thursday's Therapy ~ Good Grief - A Short Animated Documentary About Grief ~Griever, Fiona Dalwood

Thursday's Therapy

A Short Animated 

~by Griever, Fiona Dalwood
Writer, Director, Animator

Good Grief, a remarkably powerful and touching animated short film by Australian director Fiona Dalwood, shows how five different individuals cope with loss. Whether the loss was that of a parent, a bunny, an amputated leg or a good friend by suicide, each person’s compelling story of grief rings familiar with anyone who has had (a) loss of their own.

Inspired by the loss of her own mother and the grief that ensued, director Fiona Dalwood went about finding out how the experience of loss transforms us. With a shoestring budget and months of hard work, she made Good Grief, a beautiful short film that has been described as “adorable and heartfelt.” Accessible to children and adults alike, it is being used in educational programs as a starting point to discuss the process of grief and what some of the positive outcomes of grief can be.

Good Grief

(Winner of at least ten (10) film awards)

~Fiona Dalwood

Article presenting the animated Grief film:

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Wednesday's Woe - What Happened to 'Happily Ever After'?

Wednesday's Woe

What Happened to 

'Happily Ever After'?

My fairy-tale world has been splattered ~
A mother and father raising their children
With God's help was all that really mattered
When one of their own, taken by death, chilled them----
Then no one could live 




...The clock keeps going around
Though we've been run aground
Doesn't the world understand ~our world has stopped~?
      Tic.   Tock.

But our bodies are still walking around!
(They don't see the hearts that are shattered inside…)
Our functioning bodies have been hollowed out
For one of our babies has

Yes, our bodies may give the appearance we're living,
But can no one else see? 
Our bodies have lied!

The day one of our children was taken
Our hearts and our souls too were taken
So though our bodies, still living, belied

Do not be fooled,




Do not expect the old person to come 'round ~

She too was buried that day in the ground.

My fairy-tale world has been splattered ~

A mother and father raising their children
With God's help was all that really mattered
When one of their own, taken by death, chilled them----
Then no one could live 




But God in Heaven, please forgive…
This is not all there is---
Our "happily ever after" is not here

We will see her again, with You,
And our world will not be forever blue

Your death, resurrection, and ascension proved
You made a way for us 

To live truly... 
Happily ever after!

No matter how bad things get here,
Our Heavenly Father will always draw near
He cares enough for us
To capture our every

You keep track of all my sorrows. 
You have collected all my tears in Your bottle. 
You have recorded each one in Your book. 

~ Psalm 56:8

Poem ~ What Happened to "Happily Ever After"? ~ Angie Bennett Prince ~ April 23, 2014

First picture:

Takahiro Kimura; Paper, 2002, Assemblage / Collage BROKEN1000FACES 170
thanks to,
Kiki Breet on Pinterest

My tears in Your bottle Picture, thanks to:
Photo Credit:,
Also, to
~My Faith ~Sissy Sherrod on Pinterest