The Parkland Florida Massacre

We watched the nation grieve right in front of the camera’s lens following the Parkland massacre.

Horror at hearing of lives lost
The frenzy
Needing to know details
Crying as the reality sinks in
Powerlessness as parents and others couldn’t protect
Confusion at the bombardment of questions coming from so many
Resounding whys? Why me? Why didn’t someone prevent this? Why my child?
Survivor guilt…how am I alive and my sister, brother, friend, teacher is not?
Regrets of if only I did…If only I didn’t…
Triggers sparking anguish, despair and anger

Numbness can envelope you because its all too much to bear.

Avoidance patterns may emerge…I can’t go back to school, I’m afraid to go anywhere.

Reassurances that you are not alone given by the President. But these reassurances may feel empty as a false attempt at consoling.

While anger fosters students and the nation to rally together and fight for change, the bereaved families are left behind with broken hearts in the wake of this senseless tragedy. The families are having to cope with their loss and the reality that they will never see, or talk to, or hold their loved one again.

Once the lens of the camera goes elsewhere, the surviving family members face an uphill battle with their grief. These are not the stories seen in front of the cameras, because grief is isolating and an internal process and it doesn’t go away.

I know personally about the tragedy of mental illness and a senseless death. My nephew took his own life and left behind his wife, two small children and the rest of his family in the wake of his despairing choice.

As a psychotherapist and marriage and family therapist, I directed my grief into creating Melodee Roo & The Wantoks Too! Letters For Grieving Children Like You - an award-winning, online, at-home grief support program for children and their families. I know that many families don’t reach out for help, because it’s all they can do to simply get out of bed and try to function.

I wanted to bring help to children and families right in the comfort of home, so they can feel a sense of safety to address the difficult task of coping with their loss. 

The nation and the bereaved families need help with healing, our laws need changing and everyone can benefit from learning to cope differently to curb the enormity of pain that permeates our culture. 

Let’s each do our part to help each other and create change. I will donate Melodee Roo & The Wantoks Too! to the bereaved families in the Parkland shooting. Please share this information with others to spread the message of help and support. 

Sharon Diaz LPC, LADC: Helping People. Changing Lives. Sharon is an author, a Licensed Professional Counselor, Licensed Alcohol & Drug Counselor and Marriage & Family Therapist in private practice in Shelton, Connecticut.

Source: http://www.melodeeroo.com

Patience

Facebook, Instagram, Linkedin, OH MY! I have not written for this blog in quite some time. Navigating grief is hard enough. But trying to navigate the social media world to get the word out about Melodee Roo & The Wantoks Too! Letters For Grieving Children Like You can be very daunting. So, who in their right mind would try?!  

Wanting to put my experience as a psychotherapist, family member of a loved one who took his own life, cancer survivor, divorced single-parent, and all around Queen of Resilience to the test, I decided to become an author. A self-published one at that. I think I need medication. I am officially diagnosing myself as looney toons. An aging looney toon who is having to learn about social media.

Anyone who has lost a loved one can tell you, losing your mind while grieving is pretty easy. Whether it is the foggy brain, the shock, the anguish, the daily exhaustion, the anger, the fear, the longing - it all twists what you knew to be real into an unrecognizable mish mosh that makes absolutely no sense. The worst part is, it never really ends. But we want it to. 

While coping with my own grief and being able to understand it from both a personal and professional perspective, I wanted to reach out to and help more families than I was able to help in my office. There are grieving children and families across the nation, not getting support, not knowing what to do to cope more effectively. I was filled with motivation and determination. My creativity surged. Loss was not going to kill me, subdue me, defeat me, although many times giving up seemed like it was the best and healthiest option.

Perseverance, commitment, hard work, and patience. Lessons to learn no matter what hurdle we have to face. They get us through the daily grind of grief, the unchartered territory of the unknown, one step, one day at a time. Today, I accept the challenge of patience. I renew my commitment to it regularly, knowing how powerful it can be in navigating my grief. I sure can use it in navigating social media.

And when we lose perspective, because of how hard life can be, I wanted to share this link so you can hear Jennifer Hudson - whose mother and brother were murdered - sing "I'm Here". It reminds me to remember to love who I am, to stand tall without my loved ones, to know I am here for a reason, and to continue on with my purpose that still needs to be fulfilled.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q08adFSnjUQ&sns=em

Sharon Diaz LPC, LADC: Helping People. Changing Lives. Sharon is the author of Melodee Roo & The Wantoks Too! Letters For Grieving Children Like You, a Licensed Professional Counselor, Licensed Alcohol & Drug Counselor and Marriage & Family Therapist in private practice in Shelton, Connecticut.

Source: http://www.melodeeroo.com

Tagged: griefchildrendeathsupporthelphealingfamiliesparent/losssibling/death

UGH

Do you ever have one of those days when things are just not going your way? Today, was one of those days for me. Taking risks in trying new things can be exciting, but not today. It was more anxiety-producing than fun or exciting.

I can complain. I can think the worst. I can give myself a headache thinking about it. But in the larger scheme of things - what does it really matter? Most of us want things to be exactly how we want them to be. When they don't go as we think they should, we can react with anger, fear, disappointment, moodiness, defeat. Doing this just adds to the agitation, it doesn't help at all. We have to surrender to the truth that sometimes, we have absolutely no control over a situation.

Adjusting to, and creating a "new normal" after loss stinks. Rearranging your life, not having support in the ways you would like, having to reach out of your comfort zone is not so much fun. In fact, it's down-right annoying.

We do have a choice though, in how we react to our day, to our circumstances, to our own thoughts, or to others' behavior.

For the rest of today, I think it's a good idea to simply, roll with the waves.

 

www.melodeeroo.com 

Sharon Diaz LPC, LADC: Helping People. Changing Lives. Sharon is an author, a Licensed Professional Counselor, Licensed Alcohol & Drug Counselor and Marriage & Family Therapist in private practice in Shelton, Connecticut.