Memes

Words and ways to comfort the bereaved

Don’t judge me unless you have looked through my eyes, experienced what i have, and cried as many tears as me. Until then back-off, cause you have no idea.

angel-of-grief

Today Matthew Warren died of suicide. He is the son of Rick and Kay Warren who must be facing the most painful moment in their lives. There is no pain more gut-wrenching than losing a child. My heart and prayers go out to them at this most difficult time.

““No words can express the anguished grief we feel right now,” Warren wrote in a letter to his congregation.

A long time ago, I too lost a son and I found hope and courage in Rick Warren’s The Purpose-driven Life: What on Earth Am I Here For? . The book inspired me to move beyond the pain of losing a son and work on my new normal. Because the book talks about starting a service, I initiated the The Compassionate Friends Philippines Chapter with the help of Cathy Babao and Alma Miclat.

I can’t be there to hug Rick and Kay Warren for their loss and thanking them too for giving me the courage to live this new normal after the death of my son. What I can do is to continue on with my advocacy on suicide prevention and grief education such as ways to comfort the bereaved.

In most of my meetings with the bereaved, a common complaint is the insensitivity of concerned friends or relatives. I see it also in some of the insensitive tweets addressed to Rick Warren questioning the circumstances of his death. Some may not know what to say and blurt out the wrong words.

I have had my own share. I know the depth of concern they have towards us but in their enthusiasm, they blurt out the most insensitive remarks. Newly bereaved are very sensitive to these remarks.

Many parents feel they were being unjustly judged and criticized by those who could not possibly understand because they have not experienced the loss of a child. Compassionate Friends USA shares the proper response.

Our wonderful, concerned, well-meaning friends don’t know. They can only imagine how the newly bereaved feel. They haven’t personally known (thank God) the disbelief, the shock, the anger of losing a child or any loved one. Instead of bringing relief, those words just seem to add to the hurt and the grief. There are no words that will make it all right that someone we loved has died. But there are ways that can soothe the hurt, ease the loneliness and add to the healing. Recently, my sister visited The Compassionate Friends to get tips on how to comfort a family whose daughter died of suicide.

candle-light

I’d like to share some of the ways to comfort the bereaved:

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A Mom’s Graduation Speech

“Your children will see what you’re all about by what you live rather than what you say.” Dr. Wayne W. Dyer

Nope this is not a graduation ceremony. Mom bloggers meet up with Raqgold, fellow mom blogger from Germany.

I am in another joyful phase of motherhood, more relaxed and laid back. When the kids were pretty much younger, my group of moms and I used to hang out after school whenever it was time to pick our kids. Every time the school year ends, we often joke each other…”hey, we are graduating from preschool to elementary school” or when we got older, “hey, have you graduated to high school?” and so on and so forth. Having all my kids out of college is huge milestone for me. More time to travel. More time to be by myself. More time to be with friends. More time to pursue passions that I couldn’t venture to when I was a hands-on mom.

I feel like giving my own graduation speech with me as the only audience because I deserve a pat at the back. Mothers deserve a round of applause for a job well done.

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Photo Hunt- Yellow for Kippy Cat


Photo Hunt’s theme for today is YELLOW. Let me introduce you to Kippy Cat once again. You first met him on Mother’s Day and later on during my trip to the USA. Kippy Cat was my son’s favorite yellow and black striped tiger stuffed toy when he was a young boy. He is also my travel mascot.

I showed him off to the pet cats of my sister in San Fransciso. Kobe (photo above) lies beside my Kippy Cat.


Oreo, another pet is naturally curious and sniffs at Kippy Cat.

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Photo Hunt: Furry


Photo Hunt’s theme is Furry. Kylee is best suited for this week’s theme. A few days ago, Kylee turned 10 years old (in human years) or 70 years old (in cat years). Lauren is the master of this neurotic Apple Head Siamese Cat. I bought Kylee from a pet shop sometime mid-February 1999. There were two kittens to choose from. Based on what I read, try to play with the kitten to check on the cat’s personality. From the looks of it, the frail-looking Kylee looked as if he was going to die. He looked lifeless but when I held out a piece of string, his eyes perked up and started to paw the string. This is the cat for Lauren. I held Kylee on the top of my palms and petted his furry little Apple Head, “You’re going to be Lauren’s pet”.

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Photo Hunt: Wide

Photo Hunt theme is Wide and my photo today is the wide backyard of my brother’s home in Missouri. When I left his home in mid-October, the weather was just cool and lovely. The Autumn colors were so pretty to look at too. It was my first Autumn experience.

But look at it now, two days after Thanksgiving. Everything is covered in snow. I can’t imagine living under those weather conditions. I don’t like the cold climate.

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Photo Hunt- Metal (The Amish Buggy)

Photo Hunt’ s Theme today is Metal. The most obvious symbol of the Amish is their horse-drawn buggy which is made of metal.

I took shots of this buggy as my brother and I checked out a harness shop at the Amish/Mennonite Community in Jamesport, Missouri last month. I saw a lot of the Amish and Mennonite people and of course we saw many horse and buggies along the way.
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Photo Hunt: Sad


Photo Hunt theme is Sad. I don’t actually equate sadness to this beautiful Autumn photo I took near my brother’s residence in rural Missouri. I guess I feel sad because in a week or so, I will miss him. I will miss the wonderful countryside beauty and just being with him and his family.

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