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Posts from 2017

The Transformative Power of Collateral Beauty

Lynne Goldklang is a psychotherapist, writer and a grateful member of a HOPE bereavement group.

“I don’t think of all the misery but of all the beauty that remains.”  — Anne Frank

It was one of those restless nights a few months after my husband’s death as I flipped on the TV and stared at the movie that was playing. A mother is sitting in a hospital waiting area crying as her young daughter’s life is ebbing. A strange older woman engages her in conversation and asks who is dying. The old woman listens carefully and then advises the grieving mother to be aware of “collateral beauty” — words that are the title and essence of the movie.

The meaning of collateral beauty as portrayed in the film is that love and kindness are all around if the grieving person is open to notice and receive. It is a term that is mystical yet down to earth, easily accessible.

Here Comes 2018! Happy New Year… Or Is It?

The holidays can be painful reminders of a life that “was,” but New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day with parades, football games and gatherings are triggers that make you realize how different your life really is now.

Our hopes center around the idea that this is a “new year.” In the “celebrating” of the New Year, our intentions are courageous. We hope that we will heal and feel that our lives are settling into a “new norm.” Our reality is often so different.

Living Through The Holidays

The holidays are too often a painful reminder of your changed life and the death of your loved one. They may force you to realize how much your life has changed. Holidays certainly may not feel festive — they may feel more like a spotlight painfully illuminating your sense of emptiness, aloneness and broken heart. How can you move from hiding or…

I Exhale

I exhale. The breath born but a moment ago recedes into the past as I await the next breath to begin.   Because every breath is a gateway between past and future, breathing is an ever-present metaphor for the temporal world in which we live.   Nature’s patterns proceed in rhythms. Requiring belief in life’s continuity in stark counter-point to the reality…

Excuse Me, I Have What?

I can’t find my keys! Where are those papers that I signed? I know they’re here somewhere. Oh, no, I forgot my doctor’s appointment… again. This is my 2nd fender bender in the last month. I have bruises all over from bumping into things. I’m so very tired. I just can’t think straight anymore. What is wrong with me? Am I going…

Meditation & Healing

Meditation is a valuable practice that can help people in the process of grieving for a loved one. If you’re not familiar with meditation, “How To Meditate FAQ” by Tara Brach is an introductory guide that will help you become familiar with the principles of meditation. Tara’s teachings blend Western psychology and Eastern spiritual practices, mindful attention to our inner life, and a…

HOPE Connection: Our Members Speak – Don

Los Angeles & Ventura County Grief Support Groups The mission of HOPE Connection is to help people whose lives have been touched by the death of a loved one – by providing individual and group support, educational programs and information that helps
 alleviate the pain of grief and promote healing. In this series of videos, Group Members share what HOPE Connection has…

My Step-Mother’s Funeral

Losing a parent is a unique event, and HOPE Connection’s Parent Loss Groups have proven to be just as invaluable as our Spousal Loss Groups. Here, Sydell Weiner gives a powerful testimony to the life-long effect of losing a parent. Click here for more information about HOPE Connection’s Parental Loss Groups. I ride to the cemetery with my step-sister’s daughter, a red-headed…