Pouring Your Personal Pain onto Paper June 7,
Like a child in its cradle
I would that very gentle arms
Might rock my grieving spirit
And be as it were a kindly shelter
For my heart - a traveler lost
On a remote deserted road.
Writing your feelings in a journal can be healing and when
you read your own words, you can watch the progress of your
healing as you move from a place of darkness into the light
again. When someone you love has passed on to the next life, you
can feel disoriented and alone.
At that moment, you will feel that you need someone to talk
to, someone who understands. In Marta Felbers first book:
"Finding Your Way after Your Spouse Dies," she gently
leads you through the grieving process. She starts by expressing
her heartfelt sorrow for the reader's loss and then proceeds to
speak from the heart in small easy-to-read chapters. She deals
with the deepest feelings in a very gentle way.
In this second book you will find 64 written exercises that
she completed for herself in the first year after she lost her
own husband. She deals with a wide range of emotions and issues,
such as loneliness, insecurity, friends, finance, sleeplessness,
health and anniversaries. Marta started writing these feelings
when her husband was dying and poured out her thoughts onto the
paper of two journals.
She starts by explaining how lost she felt that there was
nobody else at home. She didn't want to go home and made a list
of things that would make her house seem less empty. On the
opposite page there is a place for you to write your feelings
and a similar list of your own ideas. This format continues
throughout the book.
Some of her thoughts are so personal, you feel that she is
inviting you into her world and sitting down with you over a cup
of coffee, just pouring out her soul. I found both her books
were very nurturing.
I would like to recommend both books as a gift to anyone in
your life who has experienced a great loss. The exercises will
help to pull all those feelings that are buried inside so the
healing process can begin. The reader will move from a place of
grief to a place of renewed self-identity and wholeness.
A warm treasure that will help when going through a period of
also want to read:
Finding Your Way After Your Spouse Dies
Healing Solutions for the Hurting Soul June 7, 2002
Clean is the autumn wind,
Splendid the autumn moon,
The blown leaves are heaped and scattered,
The ice-cold raven starts from its roost.
Dreaming of you - when shall I see you again?
On this night sorrow fills my
~Li Po (701-762)
The loss of a friend or lover can be one of the most painful
and disorienting experiences life can offer. Life seems bleak
and empty, your mind becomes a pool of muddled thoughts. Losing
your spouse is even more painful and the grief a person feels
when they have to struggle through the grieving process can be
When you are trying to pick up the pieces and move on, it
helps to know that there is someone out there who understands
what you are going through. Marta Felber has dedicated this book
to the reader with the hope that it will be of help in the
journey through grief.
Drawing on her training as a therapist and her experiences in
self-healing after the death of her husband, she has written
this guide as if she was a friend sitting with you and you were
both drinking a cup of tea. She starts by expressing her
heartfelt sorrow for the reader's loss and then proceeds to
speak from the heart in small easy-to-read chapters. She deals
with the deepest feelings in a very gentle way.
She talks about how you should accept crying as a natural
process, how you can start a journal and how you must still
think about eating well and exercising even in this stage of
grief. She speaks of how to forgive, accept and let the healing
I think this is a book everyone should read whether they have
experienced a loss or not because all of us will come into
contact with someone in our lives who is experiencing loss. This
will not only help you understand grief, but will allow you to
understand what someone is going through. I think this book
could also be used for when you have lost a very good friend who
is very important to you as some of the same principles apply.
I think writing can be therapeutic and Marta has also written
a companion book called Grief Expressed: When a Mate Dies. The
second book consists of 64 written exercises that she completed
for herself in the first year after she lost her own husband.
She deals with a wide range of emotions and issues, such as
loneliness, insecurity, friends, finance, sleeplessness, health
If you have a friend who has experienced a great loss,
perhaps you could give this book to them with a flower and a
ribbon tied to it and I think it will be a gift they won't
forget. Actions do speak louder than words, in most things in
I felt very calm and nurtured after reading both of Marta's
Planning A Funeral
When Death Occurs
= Realistic Look at Death
Reviewer: The Rebecca Review.com
As men, we are all equal in the
presence of death. ~Publilius Syrus
I would recommend this book to prepare for your own funeral
or as a way to help family members pre-plan their own funerals.
There is a “Quick Reference for Those Who Face the Death of a
Loved One.” In the midst of grief, this book could also help
you quickly select various services and methods of burial before
arriving at the funeral home.
This is a book for people who are worried about “Death Care
Professionals” taking advantage of them. The information in
this book will encourage a more frugal approach.
John M. Reigle is an advocate for consumer rights in the
funeral industry. He believes people should examine all their
options and create a more meaningful service for the living,
with less emphasis on caskets, urns and vaults.
While reading, you will discover:
1. The services provided by a funeral home should also
include finalizing details after the funeral. I was amazed at
all the details that can be taken care of by the funeral home.
2. The wide variety of funeral service options.
3. Sample Forms and checklists.
4. A Memorial Service Planner.
5. Pros and Cons of each burial situation.
6. Death Certificate Information Worksheets
7. Ways to save $1,000s on caskets. You might want to spend
more on the actual service
8. Obituary forms.
9. Ideas on gathering information for a meaningful funeral
10. List of Body Donation Programs in the United States.
After reading this book, I can now understand why some family
members in the past have chosen not to have funerals and also
why some have chosen not to have open caskets.
The Services Presented in this Book Include:
Body Donation – No Service
Body Donation – With Memorial Service
Cremation – No Service
Cremation – With Memorial Service
Cremation – With Funeral Service
Burial – No Service
Burial – With Graveside Service
Burial – With Funeral Service
Once you read some of this information, you will definitely
realize that the ways we “protect” the deceased can be less
for the deceased’s benefit and more for the survivor’s
benefit. There should still be some dignity in death. For the
survivors, and for the deceased.
However, if you are not informed, under duress or don’t
have the time to compare prices of services, you could be taken
advantage of and feel worse than you do already due to added
financial burdens. I think this is a straightforward source for
information on a wide variety of funeral services.
A Comforting book about Facing the Loss of a Child
Facing the Loss of a Child
and Empathy, September 4, 2005
"I have come to realize in a new way that every loss is
unique, and that loss leaves no one unmarked. I can understand
what it means to lose a lifetime partner, or even to lose a
beloved pet. They are all losses - real losses."
Robert J. Marx and Susan Wengerhoff Davidson have helped parents
deal with the loss of a child. They understand the variety of
ways people mourn and also describe the many ways parents deal
How do you end the pain of loss when you want to remember the
life of your child? How do you speak to someone who has lost a
part of themselves? What do parents feel as they go through the
unpredictable nature of grief? How do hurting parents relate to
each other at such a difficult time in their lives?
The authors understand the loss of a child on a deep level and
show great compassion in their poetic and sensitive writing
style. At times the writing is a friend, understanding your pain
and at time the writing is a counselor guiding you through a
stage where you may experience a complete change in perspective.
If you are buying this book for yourself, I want you to know
that this book is very comforting and if you read a chapter at a
time you may find it helps you to work through your overwhelming
feelings. You will come to realize that so many parents have
gone through the experience and there are stories that you will
be able to relate to that deal with all ages and situations.
Through this process, you may feel that finally someone
understands and you may also come to understand how people
around you are struggling to express their love and sadness.
If you know someone who has lost a child and are a friend or
relative, then this book will explain the variety of religious
beliefs and how people view death. There are ideas on how to be
a compassionate listener and how to support your friends or
relatives even when you are also hurting.
I can also recommend this book to:
Facing the Ultimate Loss will be meaningful to anyone who has
experienced loss because so many forms of loss all leave their
indelible imprint on our hearts. When you try to forget your
loss it can feel as if a part of you is dying, so this book can
help you balance your need to remember with a reduction in pain
and it can also help you to honor the memory of your child. The
beauty in this book left me crying, page after page. It was
truly a healing journey and it helped me to understand loss from
a variety of perspectives. I think if you read the Epilogue
first, it will make the book even more meaningful.
Grieving God's Way
A Compassionate Story of Facing Loss, May 23, 2006
offers only outstretched arms
to unburden grief." ~ Diantha Ain
Margaret Brownley is the author of 23 books of fiction and this
is a book where she deals with her own reality in all its pain
and conflict. She is also the founder of a Bereavement Care and
Grief Center. Through her own experiences and the experiences of
those around her she has learned a great deal of practical
information she now offers to anyone who has unresolved grief
and wants to find their way back to their lost joy.
"The soul seeks to grow, to question, and to understand,
and this constant search plunges us into dangerous waters and
hurls us into hostile space. It's the soul that demands answers
from God." ~Margaret Brownley
Grieving God's Way is divided into four main sections that
include healing in the areas of Body, Soul, Heart and Spirit.
The book starts with gentle breathing exercises and continues
through a process of healing each section of hurt and confusion.
You will find a place to relax into an understanding that calms
and comforts the soul.
The importance of writing, prayer, exercise, getting outside in
the sun, lighting candles, remembering good memories and
heart-healing ideas are presented with care in a nurturing
environment of beautiful writing. I have read many books on
grief, but this one is my favorite because it addresses issues
in easy-to-read sections and is written by an author who truly
understands the grieving process. Grieving God's Way is a very
personal journey into the heart.
"Tears comfort the soul
washing away our sorrow
one drop at a time." ~Diantha Ain
~The Rebecca Review
Your Way out of Pain
Items for Traumatic Situations
Trauma, September 2, 2005
If you bring forth that which is within you,
Then that which is within you
Will be your salvation.
If you do not bring forth that
Which is within you,
Then that which is within you
Will destroy you.
~The Gnostic Gospels
Peter A. Levine Healing Trauma Books & CD
What a way to begin a book! While this "riddle" has
been unlocked by scholars and they claim it means we should
transform through love, unlocking the physiological roots of
emotions can be somewhat trying.
How do you heal what you have forgotten? When the trauma has
been forgotten, the results can still remain and can slowly
destroy you, causing overwhelming emotions that interfere with
your daily life.
Survivors of accidents, disasters and traumatic situations of
all types can experience anxiety, depression, unexplained
physical pains and seemingly unrelated illness. At times
suffering can be a doorway to awakening and then it can also be
a very dark place that brings debilitating symptoms.
"When people have been traumatized, they are stuck in
paralysis-the immobility reaction or abrupt explosions of
rage." ~ Peter A. Levine
Through guided somatic Experiencing Techniques, Peter A. Levine
brings the reader from a place of disconnection and disharmony
to a place of accepting an experience occurred and healing the
trauma. This is a Twelve-Phase Program with an Integrated CD.
This CD could be used by anyone who has:
Survived a natural disaster or life-threatening event
Experienced the loss of a loved one
Undergone a recent medical procedure
Endured emotional abuse
Experienced a car accident
If you start reading the book before playing the CD is works
better and the feeling of the CD is like a psychologist leading
a patient through guided imagery. While the process is supposed
to take 7-14 days, you can listen to the CD all at once to find
out what will work best for you. The book has lists of
descriptions to help you analyze your emotions and there is
information on how our bodies react to extremely stressful
Peter A. Levine explains how you can discharge and transform the
negative energy and he gives techniques for bringing the nervous
system back into balance. Even after just watching violence I
think you can become somewhat numb from the shock, so this CD
can even help anyone who has been shocked by the realities of
our violent planet.
Resource for Understanding Trauma
Resolution of Trauma, September 2, 2005
"TIR allows practitioners to address trauma more deeply
while simultaneously resolving trauma quickly." ~Victor R.
TIR (Trauma Incident Reduction) can be used on the frontlines of
disasters. It can help people cope with what has just occurred
and it can permanently eliminate PTSD (Post-traumatic Stress
This one-on-one, non-hypnotic, person-centered, structured
therapy helps patients to run experience through their minds
until insights appear. This time of reflection seems to
encourage people to not only face what has happened, but to
understand the impact and then to begin the journey out of
trauma and into healing.
As a survivor of PSTD, I can truly say this book is rather
enlightening. I experienced many of the symptoms discussed in
this book after a few very troubling years of major breakups,
car accidents and dramatic life changes including surviving a
hurricane in the Caribbean on my honeymoon. A hurricane is truly
one of the most frightening experiences you can endure. My own
experience happened 10 years ago during the same time of year as
The process I went through to stabilize my own psyche involved
many of the techniques discussed in this book, however my
recovery was based on friends and family listening. In fact, the
main concept in TIR seems to be "listening."
When a patient begins to experience PTSD they may not even
realize what is happening. I didn't even know about PTSD or what
a panic attack was until I read about the symptoms. People who
experience devastation not only have to rebuild their lives,
they have to deal with anger, anxiety, panic attacks,
flashbacks, claustrophobia, insomnia, nightmares, rage,
depression, fatigue, obsessive thoughts, guilt and a number of
issues relating to PTSD.
The techniques described in this book will help individuals
dealing with adjustment disorders, acute stress, phobias, sexual
abuse, domestic violence, mourning and depression. The topics
also include crime, grief, loss, abuse, accident victims, loss
of a child, loss of a partner and surviving the experiences in a
war. There is an excellent example of a woman who goes from
experiencing a great loss to recounting the memory and then
comes to terms with her grief. Psychotherapists also tell about
their experiences and how TIR helped their patients:
When he finished, looked at me and was
crying, he said, "You Know, you are the only person
who has ever listened to me.
I feel better already. ~Alex Frater, Psychotherapist
The next logical step after reading this book seems to be
attending a workshop or ordering the TIR and Metapsychology
Lecture Series. There is a list of TIR trainers with Q & A
to help you decide on a teacher or find out about a website
filled with information on TIR. The interviews with people who
have training in TIR makes this entire solution much easier to
understand. I would suggest reading the question and answer
section in the Appendix B first because it truly introduces you
This book does seem to be written to encourage professionals to
take a TIR workshop. Recommended to Psychologists, Social
Workers, Traumatologists, Compassion Fatigue Specialists and
anyone interested in Post-traumatic Stress Syndrome.
In my own life and the life of family members and friend I have
seen that talking about incidents is more healing than
repressing feelings. It might be painful to talk about your
experiences, but that is how many people find a path to healing
and sometimes you really can't heal the trauma until you face
and understand the circumstances that caused the PTSD. The
healing seems to be very rapid after you identify the causes and
then implement solutions. TIR seems to take patients to a place
where they can begin the healing process much more quickly.
Also see my Independent Living Tag at this book location:
Excellent Advice and Extensive Research, May 23, 2006
Phyllis Staff spent years researching the topic of senior
housing and the result is this well researched book on finding
the best elder care. There are checklists and worksheets so you
know which question to ask and the resource section is very
helpful for locating information fast. The main sections
Choosing Care Suited to Your Elder's Needs
How Will You Pay For Long-Term Care?
Stretching Your Long-Term Care Dollars
Create A List Of Potential Facilities
Research The Parent Company
The Telephone Interview
Go Early to Scout Out the Neighborhood
First Impressions Count
Meet the Property Staff
Touring the Property
Talking With Elderly Residents
Reviewing Facility Records
Expenses: What to Expect
The Unannounced Visit
Trust But Verify
Finalize Your Selection
Documents For Safe-Keeping
How to Find Great Senior Housing not only discusses Nursing Home
Care, it also addresses Adult Day Care, Hospice Care and
Independent Living. By reading this book you can get an
excellent idea of what type of care is needed and this can save
a lot of time when searching for specific locations that provide
specific types of care. Whether you are looking for outside help
or you need full-time care, this book has many practical
Throughout there are "Red Flags" like:
"Reluctance to allow you to eat and converse with residents
can be a sign of a poor property."
Award Bonus Points include notes that address various issues.
One example includes: "Staff who address residents as
friends rather than children point to a high quality of
With so much to think about when addressing senior housing, I
can't think of a better book to make you aware of all the
factors involved in such a complex decision. When you want the
best for your family, this book will show you how to find the
best senior housing in your area.
~The Rebecca Review
Choices at the End of Life
What do your parents want? , May 23, 2006
"Perhaps most important, we will provide tips on how to
talk about the things that matter most to your parents. What do
they value? Who is important to them? What do they want their
lives to be like as they approach the final stretch of the road?
If you understand the answers to these questions, you will
better understand the choices they make about their
healthcare." ~Linda Northlander and Kerstin McSteen
Linda Northlander and Kerstin McSteen deal with the very
sensitive issue of discussing death and life-support treatments
with your parents. Through this book, you can learn a great deal
about medical terminology and the pros and cons of feeding tubes
and orders like DNR and DNI, but may or may not be what your
parents want. So, this book helps you and your parents decide
what is best.
The chapters in this book include:
Planning a Discussion
Who's Who in Advance Care Planning
Opening the Discussion
Understanding Values and Goals
Assessing Decision-Making Ability
How to Talk with the Doctor
Completing a Healthcare Directive
Understanding Hospice Care
Kitchen Table Calamities
Grief support, hospice care and issues with honoring directives
are also discussed. This book will be appreciated by caregivers
and by the person who knows they will need to be making many of
the main decisions in regards to healthcare for an elderly
relative. While difficult to read about death, it does bring an
understanding to the healthcare issues everyone faces at the end
of life. You may also want to read this book if you are working
on a Living Will/Advance Directive. The last time I was in a
hospital one of the first things the nurse asked me was if I had
a Living Will, so this book may be useful for more than end of
~The Rebecca Review
Family Scrapbook Memory Album
Memory Scrapbook, May 22, 2006
"According to the Alzheimer's Association, an estimated 4.5
million Americans are currently living with Alzheimer's
disease-by 2050, that number is expected to grow to between 11.3
million and 16 million." ~Nichole L. Torres, Entrepreneur
Memory books can have a very positive impact on the lives of
those living with Alzheimer's disease and the positive energy
also filters out to those who view the scrapbooks. By creating
the scrapbook, you can then spend time reminiscing over a
well-lived life and also help to trigger memories.
The Memory Book was created by Maya Opavska who loves to create
scrapbooks. Each book has photographs you can use to trigger
memories or you can use all your own photos. There are places to
put photos for: Friends, Family, Romance, Love, Marriage,
Children, Play, Dancing, Baseball, Birthdays, Vacations, Teenage
Years and Graduation. On each main section there is also a place
to write what is remembered in the "I Remember"
section. Each page is like a scrapbook design with places for
There is also a Connect, Pause, Reflect section with ideas for
remembering items that fit into the themes of the pages. On the
Vacation themed pages you will find: "I remember...Packing
suitcases, loading kids in the car, driving for hours, Route 66.
Roadside attractions, souvenirs, postcards, motels."
Caregivers can use this book to encourage pleasant memories and
people feel better just from viewing pictures and connecting
with their happiest memories. Photo corners that are
peel-and-stick are included to hold photos in place. The pages
are durable and will last a long time.
To make up a Memory Lane Connect and Reflect Kit, add the Memory
Video and Memory CD. These resources can be used in senior care
facilities or at home.
~The Rebecca Review