Thursday, October 30, 2014

Book Review: Experiencing the Loss of a Family Member

Experiencing the Loss of a Family Member: Discover the Path to Hope and HealingExperiencing the Loss of a Family Member: Discover the Path to Hope and Healing by H. Norman Wright
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I hate that this book applies to me this year.  My parents owned a gravestone business when I was growing up, so I was often around when there were others dealing with their grief, many of my childhood photos took place in cemeteries because we often made a trip Dad needed to make for work into a family trip, and I even met my best friend in elementary school when her family stopped in to buy a monument for her brother.  But as much as I had been around grief, it's another story when it hits home.  This year I lost my mother, my grand-father-in-law, and several family friends.

When my mother died, it felt like my world stopped.  She had been going downhill, but it was still a surprise.  There seemed nothing different about that day than any other, but that day will be engrained in my memory, down to the clothes I was wearing.

Life has to go on for the living, even if we don't want it to.  There are fears and losses.   I'm dealing right now about how I plan my wedding since both of my parents have passed away.  Milestones bring back memories.  Holidays are no different.  Things change even when we don't want them to.

This book, Experiencing the Loss of a Family Member helps work through that grief and emotion.  It reminds you that what you are feeling is okay.  There are questions to help you think about why you are feeling the way you are.  Examples are "I am afraid of ______.  What can I do about it? ______"

This book is difficult to read.  Yet, I'm so glad I did.  There are different chapters, and not all relate to me, but each one had something worthwhile in it.  The chapters are:

The World of Grief
The Loss of a Spouse
The Loss of a Child
Helping Children in Grief
The Death of a Parent
Parent Loss
The Loss of a Sibling
The Loss of a Friend
The Loss of a Pet
The Questions of Life
Helping Others

There are Bible verses in this book that help give hope.  Hope is something that is so difficult to see when the sun has set on someone's life, but this book helped me go on.  It helped me think about my own mortality, and that I want to be important enough in others' lives that they will need a book like this when it's my time to go.

This book encourages you to seek out others.  Be it in a group setting of a grief support group, or calling up a friend.  Life is a journey, and we need one another.  If we didn't then we wouldn't be grieving.

I remember seeing a quote somewhere on line recently that I should be thankful for grief, it means I loved someone so much I miss them.  That's true, but there's more heartbrokenness for me   There is pain, but I get up every morning.  I go on.  And this book helped me start looking to the future instead of the past.

FTC disclaimer:  I received a copy of this book from Bethany House Publishers in exchange for a fair and honest review.

You can purchase this book here:

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