Thursday, April 21, 2011

Here It Comes!

Tomorrow is the official release date for Healing, but Amazon has it out today!

Once again, thank you to everyone who graciously sat for an interview for the book. I wish you could all see the messages I get from readers. The book's facebook page (you can go there by clicking on the link in the sidebar to the right.) is starting to draw people in who were looking for a place to discuss their grief experiences. Every day I get at least one direct message from someone about their story. For some, the death is recent and they're still in that stunned phase. For others, like the mother of a young, beautiful dancer in her early 20s, it's been a few years and they tell me of the work done in their honor.

Each one is precious and reminds me why I started this in the first place.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Book Signings!

Upcoming Book Signing Events-

4/28 Knoxville, TN Barnes and Noble 4-6PM

4/30 Pigeon Forge, TN Book Warehouse 2PM

5/6 Franklin, TN Landmark Booksellers 5:30PM

5/7 Murfreesboro, TN Hastings 2PM

Come pick up your copy of Healing: The Essential Guide to Helping Others Overcome Grief and Loss. I'd love to see you!

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Everything You Need to Know About Funerals That One Will Tell You

Recently I was asked to contribute my list of 5 things families should know about funeral planning. I'm sure it won't surprise you to know I told them a "straight list" wasn't really my style. I submitted the following. Let the comments begin!

The Five Things No One Tells You About Funeral Planning

Ugly Truth #1
This may be the worst shopping imaginable, but you are still a consumer.
Final arrangements can be very expensive. Chances are, you're in no condition to ask many questions, so take someone with you when taking care of business.

Ugly Truth #2
Somebody's About to Say Something Stupid
Whether it's an acquaintance, friend, or even a family member, someone will say a very wrong thing. Considering the awkwardness most of us feel when approaching the grieving family, we shouldn't be surprised when emotional panic comes out in a wild faux pas. The important thing for you to know is the best reaction is no reaction. They'll be replaying the scene in their mind and kicking themselves for years to come, so why bother? Walk away.

Ugly Truth #3
Houses Are Burglarized During Funerals
I know, it's shocking, but it's true. These animals scan the newspaper for funeral announcements, then google the family's address(es) and get to work. The easy fix? Have someone stay behind during the service. Trust me when I tell you there is someone who desperately wants to help you but is freaked out by funerals. Having them house-sit will make you both feel better.

Ugly Truth #4
The Obituary is Not a Report Card
If someone has strong opinions about writing the obituary, let them do it. Make sure the name of the deceased is spelled correctly, then step aside. When it comes to survivors, don't worry about being listed first, last, or not at all. Nothing that is written can change your relationship with the person who has died. Don't let this become a battle. It's not worth fighting.

Ugly Truth #5
Someone Will Let You Down
There will be someone who loves you very much, but will not attend the service, send flowers, a card, or even call. This doesn't mean they don't care about you or the person who died. It usually means they are either paralyzed with fear over saying the wrong thing, or some past experience has made them unable to handle death in general. It's only natural to be hurt by this apparent abandonment, but a forgiving heart will serve you both. Take comfort in those who are able to support you, and know you're not alone.

When someone dies, (other than attending the service), I do this for the family-