This week, we’re going to get to know Joan from Pages from Joan
I’m getting to know Joan through a blogging Facebook group we mutually belong to. As she visits and comments on my posts, I’m learning she is a kindred spirit. Her comments are always positive, encouraging, and often thought provoking. I always look forward to hearing from her. Thanks Joan for being such a loving, caring, person.
In her own words, Joan is a wife, a mom, and a writer who lives in Georgia, in the U.S.A. She is a calligrapher, enjoys fitness, and a voracious reader.
I’m super excited to be sharing a post from Joan on helping the bereaved.
On the weekend of the ninth anniversary of my Mama’s passing on October 24, 2006, I wanted to share what I have learned are some of the best ways to help those who are grieving. Did you know? The definition of bereaved is “to be deprived of a loved one through a profound absence, especially due to the loved one’s death”.
People may excite themselves in a glow of compassion not by toasting their feet at the fire and saying, ‘Lord, teach me more compassion,’ but by going and seeking a person who needs compassion.” Henry Ward Beecher (1813-1887, an abolitionist)
You see, this fall also marks the passing of my Daddy, just two years ago. With both of my parents now gone, I have been encouraged by friends and family, alike.
We have only this moment, sparkling like a star in our hand…and melting like a snowflake. Let us use it therefore before it is too late.” Marie Edith Beynon
I have grieved with my husband in the passing of his mother in 2010. We have stood with my sister’s family (2009) in the loss of their young adult son, Brad, and more recently we have joined our dear friends in Virginia in the loss of their 23 year old son, Taylor in early 2015.In recent years, I have also had the privilege to support others in their grief journeys.
4 Ways To Best Help The Bereaved:
(1) Show Up. When you’re not sure what to do, simply be there. Those who are grieving want to know you are praying for them and that you care about their loss. This calls for us to reach for courage in order to go to the hard place and love on those in need. Show up with attention and grace.
The people we love most do become a physical part of us. When we lose them, be it by death or earthly separation, the sense of rupture is real and raw. Meghan O’Rourke
(2) Don’t worry if you don’t have the right words to say. My Mama used to tell me that if I didn’t know what to say, it wasn’t necessary to say anything, but to be physically present is always important.
(3) Remember them in the weeks and months ahead. Mark your calendar if necessary to remind yourself to drop them an encouraging note, text, or email. Share your memories of their beloved one. Mail a book, a small gift, or drop some banana bread by their home to let them know their loss has not been forgotten. Many who lose a loved one feel as though everyone else’s life is going on and they are stuck in this place of grief.
YOUR reaching out to them may be just what they need at a particular time.
(4) Speak their name. Never stop saying their loved one’s name. Some people may believe that speaking the deceased’s name will bring the survivors sadness, but instead there’s a good chance it will bring them joy as you remember their loved one by speaking his/her name often.
There are many additional ways to
come alongside and encourage those who are grieving.
What are some actions that have helped you
during your season of bereavement?
Don’t miss out on some extra exposure for YOUR BLOG!! I would love to get to know you and share your blog post here. Drop me an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or stop by my post Getting to Know You and tell me a bit about who you are!
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10 thoughts on “Getting To Know Joan”
HI There! Somehow I missed this and I so appreciate you posting my post about Bereavement. I loved reading all of the comments here, as well! Thanks for the shout-out, Robyn!
Love this getting to know you posts! Wonderful!!
Thanks Anna! It’s a lot of fun getting to know my blogging friends a bit more!
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I just wish I had thought of that… What a wonderful way to get to know your blog friends… Great site!
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Having lost my Dad in 2012 on New Years Morning I know how it feels to be deprived of one you love.Four years later and it still feels like yesterday.X
I’m sorry Verushka. That’s really hard. I can relate; I lost my dad in 2011 two days after Christmas. Strange thing to have in common but I feel less alone knowing so.
What a lovely post. People never know what to say when someone has died, but it really doesn’t matter. Showing up does mean so much.
I think so too, Wendy.
Very wise words here. It is often hard to know what to say or do when a person is grieving and this advice is really helpful, especially regarding saying the name of the person and also keeping up the support as time goes on. I like the suggestion to stay quiet and just be there.
I never know what to say but have to agree that often times all that is needed is to simply be there. I remember when my grandmother passes; I couldn’t tell you one thing anyone said to me, but I sure do remember those who were simply there to offer support! Thanks for stopping by Gilly!