Introduction

Since 1st August 2001, it has been my intention to write about grief and to raise awareness of one of the only guarantees in our lifetime. My hope is to, once again, help create a healthier approach towards grief, open up communications and remove the negative stigma and fear which is rife in today’s society. After my life changing experience, the only way I could find any kind of hope was to be creative with my em

grief, loss

otions. I chose to channel this into a tribute website: www.creative-emotions.com as for me, in those desperate days, I could continually think about the content and it was the only way I felt that Herb would continue to live for eternity. I have chosen to write about this because still today, my grief is a driving force in my life but now, it plays a largely positive role.

I have always believed in destiny and from when I was just 11 years old, I sent off applications to have a number of penfriends. For some unknown reason, (although I suspect it was linked to The Sound of Music!), my first choice was to befriend someone in Austria and I spent my teenage years in frequent contact with Fritz. After almost a decade of writing letters to each other, we met, he came to England and I went to Austria and was latterly introduced to his friend Martin (soon to be nicknamed Herbie). I knew after my first introduction to Herb that he would, somehow, be involved in my life and within a year, I had travelled back out to live in Linz, Austria and we were engaged.

Six years later, the day after Herb and I had planned our wedding, he was involved in a diving accident and drowned. Within the next 3 weeks, I discovered I was pregnant on the day of his funeral and then sadly miscarried our only child which we had been trying for. Due to the legal system in Austria, I lost every possible security that he had promised and I found myself having to face my life without him, deal with the loss of our baby, the loss of my best friend, my soul mate and I knew immediately that I would end up losing what had become our home, business and friends as my long term future would no longer be in Austria.

They say that time heals the pain

but this ache will never go,

the tears from heaven as I stand in the rain

pour down and with them you.

Although your fire has been blown out,

your life will never die;

Be it through me, your spirit or these words of love,

you’ll always be nearby.

 

A year later, I left Austria with a rucksack on my back and my dream and destiny became my past. I started a new chapter of my life which took me to Vietnam and for the first time, I didn’t know what my future held. My dreams which had always revolved around Austria had died with Herb. My life seemed to have no direction, it had no destiny and it was with extreme trepidation that I stepped onto the plane which physically took me away from what had become my home country. I felt vulnerable and excited yet somehow “Comfortably Numb”.

After arriving back in the UK, I threw myself into studying and one of the courses I chose to study with the Open University was “Death and Dying”, I needed to educate myself about my experiences and understand why, in our modern world, grief had become such an embarrassing taboo subject.

Therefore, based on both my experiences and education, I would like this book to focus on:

  • The Introduction
  • My Personal Story
  • The Immediate Days after Tragedy
  • After Death Communication (ADC)
  • My Experience of the 7 Stages of Grief (Elizabeth Kuebler-Ross)
  • My Coping Strategies / Grief Tools
  • Creative Emotions
  • Change: Emotional & Cultural
  • SocioCultural Attitudes to Grief
  • Funerals
  • My Life Today

I would like to leave you with the first lyrics I ever wrote for a piece of music Herb composed for me:

I LOVED YOU

 I never thought I’d still love you

The waves are crashing and the water’s oh, so blue

I never thought I’d still love you

You were my hero, what am I now without you?

I loved you, I loved you How I loved you, I loved you.

Long ago

In times of old

Our moments were so precious

My heart was filled with gold … with gold

I never thought I’d still love you

The waves are crashing and the water’s oh, so blue

I never thought I’d still love you

You were my hero, what am I now without you?

Help me to discover

My life now that you’re gone

And then I may believe

I’m carrying your son

(Sung in an echo) And my heart…

…drags without you near

Your soul is by my side

I live life without any fear

Standing here

As I look out to the sea

Alone on this rock

Emblazoned by the fire of love I see

I never thought I’d still love you

The waves are crashing and the water’s oh, so blue

I never thought I’d still love you

You were my hero, what am I now without you?

I look forward to sharing my creatively emotional journey with you…

Grief: My Story
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