My Dear Community,
Recently, I spoke with a grieving woman who lost her child by suicide 19 months ago. She asked me, “How did you move forward after your son’s traumatic death? Talk therapy just does not work.”
I paused, took a deep breath and began…
Four years before Reed died, I was sitting in an early morning circle with other women leaders. We were discussing our career goals. Puzzled, I wondered out loud, “What would happen if I were a better listener?” As a speech-language pathologist, I had never taken a course in listening.
Little did I know that years later my career would take an about face. From speech focus to listening focus.
Then, in January of 1998, just a few weeks before Reed’s death, my friend Diane Blinn brought me a brochure detailing the work and training program of Ilana Rubenfeld.
Diane said, “I want this woman to be my teacher. Her program teaches you to listen with your whole body as an instrument.”
Energy streamed through my body as Diane shared more. Something BIG was being revealed.
Then Reed died.
Five supports moved me through and beyond this tragedy to the place I am today:
My journey began with willingness. Walking out of the hospital, leaving Reed’s body behind, I said, “Just like the sun comes up every morning, I will move through this grief.”
2. Faith and a Daily Devotional Practice
When I sat in my prayer chair at the beginning of each day, I felt enfolded in love.
We were all in this together. They were devastated by Reed’s death, too. So I never felt alone. We grieved differently. But I could check-in and share what I was experiencing without judgment. And I listened to them. Simply sharing from the heart.
Just like we do in the Suicide Bereavement Support Group (www.sbsnw.org).
Many friends I thought would be a support – weren’t. This is common to almost every griever I’ve sat with. Yet many others sent monthly note cards (this was long before cell phones).
Others asked, “How are you?” and I could truly say what I was feeling. They cared. Without judgement.
5. And the Rubenfeld Synergy Method ® training program
First, I experienced the talk-touch therapy for myself. I would inhale sharply when replaying the memory of Reed’s body on the gurney. Touch dissipated the trauma frozen in my diaphragm. Four years later, the lingering sadness finally released after one profound session.
Finally, I trained as a body-mind therapist in the Rubenfeld Synergy Method ®
I learned to listen.
Grief is a process.
Grief is not a problem to solve.
Grief is not a problem to fix.
You are not alone.
Love all around, above, below, to the left and to the right, before you and behind you,