Please be aware, if you are having issues with addiction or suicidal thoughts and/or planning, you need to consult a professional specializing in those areas. I am happy to work in concert with any medical or psychiatric professional. To find an addiction specialist or a meeting, go to www.addiction.com. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline can be reached at 1-800-273-8255.
On Grief & Loss
Successfully Working with Me
What is Fearless Grieving?
Fearless Grieving is how we heal – by diving into the process, opening our hearts and allowing our emotions to be mended and transformed.
It does not mean not being scared – that’s perfectly reasonable and human. But it is also about following the wise words of Susan Jeffers:
"Feel the Fear – And Do It Anyway."
Don’t let your fear run your life and your choices – as a team, we will ease those fears and comfort your heart.
It is also about making the commitment to transmute our suffering into triumph – and about making sure that the loss we have felt is not the end of our story.
Need some stories to inspire you? Check out my Outside Articles page to link to some courageous people, whose lives have been lifted to a new level of depth and resilience after their recovery.
Why do I need a Grief Coach?
Grieving a loss, any loss, is one of the most challenging paths we walk. You deserve someone by your side whom you can trust to make you feel heard and safe – a compassionate expert who helps you quiet the panic in your aching heart. Grief Relief is a life-changing and intimidating process – don’t face it alone.
There is no substitute for talking to another human being for empathy, for authenticity and for connection.
Am I going crazy?
I know it can feel that way. You may not be able to hold a thought in your head or focus on a task – though you have a thousand things to do. But you are not crazy – you are heartbroken. And you are human. Please have compassion for your mind, heart and spirit – you will get through this. I talk more about much of this in my book, Putting out the Fire; Nurturing Mind, Body & Spirit in the First Week of Loss & Beyond.
It’s been a very long time since my loss –
is it too late to heal? Is that even possible?
It is never too late to begin the healing and processing of a devastating loss. No matter how painful it is, how long ago it was or if the grieving is confusing, if it is getting in the way of your happiness and enjoying your life, it is time to take that courageous step and get support.
Grief and trauma are like glue – unless we work to pry them loose, they stick to you. When it starts affecting your work, your health, your family or your journey in any way, don’t wait. You deserve some calm in your heart.*
We often think that healing means that we will forget our loss or that we can go back to the way things were before this happened. None of us has the power to turn the clock back. But it is absolutely possible to find new ways of being in harmony with your life. I call it Weaving the Loss into the Landscape of Your Life™. It is part of your story and we often need help shaping the tale so that the chapter ends with you in a peaceful place, with less discomfort and more serenity in your core.
I am having issues with my family – can you help us?
Grief can often tear families apart for many reasons – family secrets come to the surface, emotions are raw, different grieving styles clash and a dozen other causes. I would be more than happy to sit with up to five family members to untangle the strands and facilitate communication and problem-solving. We would need to have a private conversation to give me some idea of what the circumstances are. I am creating Family Relief & Resolution Packages where I come to your home and sit with you all in privacy and comfort. These can also be conducted at my office or a neutral location, if you so choose. The needs of each family are very complex, so those are designed individually, though you can look my Individual Packages to get an idea of how I work. It is incredibly vital to have an outside eye and ear to offer a new perspective and compassion to years-old family issues that get intensified after a loss.
I am also happy to sit with your family and create a day where we can honor and celebrate a loved one – please contact me for a customized approach.
Please note, “family” is not only defined by blood – anyone whom we consider to be family or important and involved in this process can participate.
I don’t live near you – how can we work together?
Many ways! If you would like to make travel arrangements, I am happy to facilitate that for some of our work together, especially for a Solace Intensive Day to jump start your process.
For ongoing work, through a combination of phone, email and Skype or Facetime, I have supported people all over the USA and some overseas, as well. If you are motivated and ready, we will find a way to make it happen!
People keep telling me I should Get Over It – but that makes no sense and seems impossible – what do I do?
To me, the concept of Getting Over It is one of the cruelest ideas associated with the grief process. It is insensitive and sets you up for failure.
A more productive goal is the concept of Weaving the Loss into the Landscape of Your Life™. Taking those emotions and memories and piecing together a more compassionate approach. Let’s seek a solution that soothes your fears and moves you forward.
My loss is an animal, not a person, but I feel just as anguished – is that OK? What do I do?
The loss of a beloved animal companion (I dislike the word “pet”) can be just as traumatic and real as that of a human. Our animals are by our sides when humans are not and can connect to us in ways that people may not understand. They are family, indeed, and their passing can be quite devastating. I am happy to treat your loss with the compassion and respect that it deserves – please do not hesitate to contact me.
I am having health issues – I can’t sleep or eat right, I am drinking too much or using drugs – how do I stop?
These are signs of what I call TARPs™ - Temporary Actions to Relieve Pain. We think we are doing something to support ourselves or indulging “just a little” to deal with the stress – and sometimes that can be okay. But it is a very fine line and it is easy to tip into some very unhealthy behaviors. I talk about many of these in my book, Putting Out the Fire.
Disruptions to eating and sleep habits are normal in the grieving process – but it adds to the stress. I can teach you how to manage and care for your grief, while still taking care of your health.
If you are in recovery and are having difficulty maintaining sobriety of any kind – don’t wait. Go to a meeting or contact an addiction specialist right away.
My friend has had a painful loss –
what do I do and what do I NOT do?
This is a complicated question and depends a great deal on your friend and their relationship to the loss they have suffered. The list of Do’s and Don’ts can get quite extensive.
In terms of what to say, “I’m sorry for your loss” goes a long way. And just being quietly available is also preferable than pelting a griever with “how can I help?” They may not know what they need in any given moment and different people will need different things. Even small gestures, like noticing the dishes need doing or getting someone from the airport may be a great gift.
There is much more on this multifaceted issue on my Blog and in my book Putting Out the Fire. That’s not a brushoff, it is a thorny discussion that deserves more attention than I can give in this brief format.
Contact me today – you are not alone and you are not stuck with your pain.
Don’t spend another moment suffering.
Some Technical Questions
Committed weekly work is the most effective for truly shifting into a new mindset and healing your heart.
Of course, how you explore your emotional journey and apply what you learn between our sessions expands and deepens everything and makes your success all the more personal and probable.
How often do you recommend we work together?
What type of mindset makes for the most effective healing?
• Knowing that you want and need help now makes all the difference.
• Being open to feeling deeply and being guided by a compassionate expert.
• Courage to take just one step today – you CAN do this.
• A willingness to shift your beliefs about grieving, because you know you cannot stay stuck in this dark place a moment longer.
Payment plans for packages are arranged personally on a client-by-client basis.
• You can pay monthly or twice a month on the 1st and 15th.
• You can make a down payment, then pay smaller amounts monthly or twice a month on the 1st and 15th, each of which is just slightly higher, but helps spread things out.
• You can also save by paying the entire package in one payment.
What payment arrangements are possible?
Sadly, due to several business issues, I no longer accept checks of any kind. Payments are usually done by credit card and prearranged.
Cash is only accepted in person by specific arrangement in advance.
Please do not mail cash!
Do you accept checks?
So what happens if I don’t use up all the hours I paid for?
Any leftover hours can be rolled over into a new package that you can renew at the end of your current package, like cell phone minutes.
I also have a wait list of people who cannot afford to come in, if you would consider donating your hours to one of them, that would be extremely kind of you. Please email me, if you would like more information on the organizations I work with.
Do you have a contract?
Yes, indeed – each one is drawn up individually, laying out payments, content and agreements that you and I discuss in advance. Contracts must be signed and agreed to prior to the start of your first session with me.