Entries by Valda

Grief in the Workplace – A Personal & Professional Perspective

We stood in small groups, clad in respectful funereal clothes, exchanging wordless hugs and mopping tears. Words seemed inadequate to express intense feelings, thoughts too fleeting to gather into a coherent sentence. We lingered, not wanting to break comforting connections with friends and relatives who we saw so rarely – geographical distance relegating meaningful exchanges […]

Back to School

A child’s version of ‘Grief in the Workplace’ I was sitting at my computer, sweltering in the humid heat of early January,  preparing for another year of the work I love, when I wrote the words below. I knew even then that by the time you got to read these words, the year would be […]

Love, Loss and Grief in a Time of Enforced Isolation

What a beginning we have all experienced to the year 2020 – a year that held so much promise, so much to look forward to. The numerical aspect – 2020 – had an almost magical sound, somehow like 2020 vision that might give everyone a fresh start – but the magic aspect has long passed. […]

Grief Stress and The Art of Distraction

I have a dilemma writing about the art of distraction – I don’t want it to be about me, but if I don’t include my own story it sounds like a lecture with a prescription, and that’s the last thing I want.  So, I’ll take a risk and leave it to your discretion to decide […]

Compassionate Helplessness in Times of Disaster

What a summer – and we still have several months of heat, humidity, and drought to endure.  Then there are the fires – terrifying in their intensity, rendered chaotic and unpredictable by fierce winds, lightning strikes, embers, carelessly thrown cigarette butts, and the occasional intervention of pyromaniacs who seem to find tinder dry grass and […]

Grief & the impact of Cultural & Religious Festivals

From now until the end of January the calendar is filled with dates of religious and cultural festivals around the world. For many people, these dates are anticipated with warmth and pleasure, while for others they are times that stimulate rushes of anxiety. People who are lonely, worried, bereaved, sick, or wondering about missing relatives […]

Funeral Rites & Funeral Rights

My dearly loved father died in the middle of the night. Five hundred miles away, I was sleeping soundly after a food deprived day at a health farm, a treat paid for by the friend sharing my room.  We were woken by a loud knock on the door, that sound marking the beginning of the […]

Beginnings & Endings – With Lifetimes in between

Endings seem to be thematic for me at the moment, sitting alongside my hopes for an exciting beginning. Today is the first anniversary of the death of my very dear friend, Ann, and missing her hurts.  Poignant memories float in and out of my mind’s eye, and I wish so much I could talk with […]

Life Changing Moments

One of my own special moments occurred when I was consumed with grief after the death of my daughter.  I was sitting on rocks at the beach, mesmerised by the sight and sound of waves, struggling to find hope that life would ever feel OK again.  I was pulled out of my almost trance like […]

The Death of a Pet

I have a Shoodle named Saffi who is central to my well being every day of the week. What is it that makes so many of us love pets? What is it that makes the bond so strong that they often feel as if they are part of our intimate family circle? Why do others […]

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