LOVE NEVER DIES EZINE
A Newsletter about the Journey from Loss to Love

February, 2003
Issue #6
Sandy Goodman,Editor
sandy@trib.com
http://www.loveneverdies.net





Welcome to the "LOVE NEVER DIES" newsletter. Please e-mail me after perusing this issue with any ideas for the May issue.


IN THIS ISSUE


=> From the Editor
=> Poetry
=> Resources
=> News and Tidbits
=> Tips and Ideas
=> Ponderings
=> From our Readers
=> Copyright and Subscribe/Unsubscribe information



Winter of our Souls--Sandy Goodman


It is winter today. There is no sun, not even a flash of light to focus on. The air has become murky as if it has solidified, losing its clarity. Ice covers everything, smothering any life that might have been.

Staring out my window, I compare the bite of winter to my grief: the coldness, the shadows, and my reluctance to breathe in any more discomfort. Grief, like winter, appears uninvited and unwelcome. We abhor the pain and wonder why we must endure the distress, while all along we feel the imminent arrival.

Winter compels the earth to rest. Everything stops struggling, stops performing, and sleeps. Abruptly, nature's need to "do" is gone and "being" is all that is necessary. All that was living before appears lifeless. The leaves disappear from the trees, flowers no longer grace our gardens, and the grass is entombed by snow. But what is going on beneath that which we see? Are the flowers really gone, or are they only changing . . . becoming new, becoming different?

I ponder how much further I dare go with this. Can I contend that grief, like winter, is a gift? Can I talk about the metamorphosis of grief, and contemplate gratitude for its presence? I do not know, but that is where my thoughts are leading me.

(Continued HERE due to length.



Knowing, Sandy Goodman


in times like these
when terror looms
i realize
that you are safe
and beyond
the fear
that we
mere mortals
must contend with
and i need not
worry
about where you are
or what can happen
in the dark
of night.
all is as it should be
when all is said and done
and i only wish
i had re-membered...
this...
then...
--Sandy



RESOURCES (Books, Links, etc.)


Book Picks:



Websites:





NEWS AND TIDBITS


I will not be speaking at The Compassionate Friends Conference in Atlanta as previously announced. However, I will be presenting a workshop in Washington D.C. at the TAPS Conference in May and at the Bereaved Parents USA Conference in St. Louis in June.
Please let me know if you are attending either of these conferences! I would love to meet you!!

*****


There is a new song out by Diamond Rio called "I Believe". It is wonderful, uplifting, and produces great zzziiinnggs! Please keep your radio tuned to a country station until you hear it. Trust me, you'll love it!

*****


I am committed to reaching out to the bereaved, to their friends and family, and to professionals, who have contact with them. Nurses, EMT's, funeral service providers, etc. are often the first people they see after learning of a loved one's death. The ability to respond to their need for direction is critically important.

To make that a bit less complicated, I have placed two downloadable resource sheets on my homepage.The link "Resource Sheets for Professionals" is at the bottom of the page. One sheet is specifically for parents who lose a child, (of any age, from any cause) and the other is for any type of loss. The sheets can be photocopied and handed to the bereaved. The resources therein will be invaluable to them in the weeks following their loss.



TIPS AND IDEAS


Valentines Day is past, but Easter, Spring Break, and the change in seasons is coming up fast. Remember to take time for yourself and your healing if you are grieving. Find a way to celebrate your loved one's life. Plant flowers, blow bubbles, take a long needed vacation. Just BE.

*****


After Jason died, we felt the need to create something that would cause people to ask, "Who is Jason Goodman?" It was extremely important, and still is, to make a lasting testimonial to his life. We approached our city council and offered to adopt a piece of their land and turn it into a park. They approved our request, and "Jason's Park" was born. I would encourage anyone who is looking at options for memorials to explore this option. It has been extremely rewarding for our family to see flowers and trees growing in Jason's name.

Now the weeds are a different story...


PONDERINGS- Sandy


Rather than "ponder" something with you, I am going to use this space to share a poem sent to me by email. I (like all of you, I would imagine) have received several messages in recent weeks about the pending war, the fear of terrorist attacks, etc. None of them moved me the way this one did. Read it slowly. And then take a minute to DO what it tells you.

WAGE PEACE by Mary Oliver

Wage peace with your breath.
Breathe in firemen and rubble,
breathe out whole buildings and flocks of red wing blackbirds.
Breathe in terrorists and breathe out sleeping children and freshly mown fields.
Breathe in confusion and breathe out maple trees.
Breathe in the fallen and breathe out lifelong friendships intact.
Wage peace with your listening: hearing sirens, pray loud.
Remember your tools: flower seeds, clothes pins, clean rivers.
Make soup.
Play music, learn the word for thank you in three languages.
Learn to knit, and make a hat.
Think of chaos as dancing raspberries,
imagine grief as the outbreath of beauty or the gesture of fish.
Swim for the other side.
Wage peace.
Never has the world seemed so fresh and precious.
Have a cup of tea and rejoice.
Act as if armistice has already arrived.
Don't wait another minute.


FROM OUR READERS:


Dear Sandy,

It's been a privilege to learn of your book Love Never Dies: A Mother's Journey from Loss to Love. I can't wait to receive & read it. In the meantime it has been wonderful to discover & explore your web site. I would like to relate some of our experiences.

We also lost a teen-age son, our's in a canoe drowning accident on a lake in Nothern Minnesota on May 20, 2000. The pain & grief has been incredible. There is hardly a waking hour that we don't think of him, remember him, & still sometimes grieve for him. I don't think, nor do I even hope, that will ever change. Adam's passing was a life-changing event, probably the most devastating that will ever occur in our lives. That is harsh reality and the bad side.

The good side is that Adam's passing has set us on a new journey in a positive direction. We have learned that human beings encounter hardships to allow us to grow. In fact, we believe all things happen for a reason. We can either learn and grow from life's challenges, or we can see them negatively and become bitter & unhappy. Whether it's because of the influence of our spirit guides or loved ones that have passed, we believe we have been led to seeing the positive growth that can result and we are now going down new, more enlightened paths.

Since our son's passing our lives have been touched in wonderful ways. Adam has sent us many signs that he is still connected to us. Objects have moved in the night, electronic things malfunction in strange ways, favorite songs play on the radio at unlikely times, cloudy areas appear in photos, scentless objects smell again, we experience wonderful dreams with him, synchronistic thoughts come in our head, and so on.

Noticing these occurrences & signs have become a way of life for us. Also, very little has gone wrong for our family in the past 2 1/2 years and we feel that is also not just coincidence. We believe we get assistance from the other side. All of this tells us our son and loved ones will always be with us, and that the bonds of love are eternal.

Since Adam's passing our lives have changed: