Melanie Delorme was a content English teacher, wife, mother, sister and friend when without warning she gained the title of bereaved parent when her eight-year-old son Garrett was accidentally killed in a hunting accident. Her road to healing brought her to write her first book. Melanie is involved with her local chapter of Compassionate Friends and is passionate about offering hope to other bereaved parents. She is currently living on a ranch in Southern Saskatchewan with her husband, Gerry, and their two children.
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After the Flowers Die: A Handbook of Heartache, Hope and Healing After Losing a child by Author Melanie Delorme
"Is it possible to survive the loss of a child?
Even though you might be feeling that the answer to this question is no, never, absolutely not; be assured that not only is it possible for you to survive, but you are also strong enough to thrive after this devastating tragedy.
The loss of a child creates a gaping hole in a parent’s heart that seems unbearable and the only people who truly understand your pain are other bereaved parents. Melanie is one of those parents and, in After the Flowers Die, she offers encouragement, hope and honest suggestions for how you can once again experience joy.
This book is written in an easy to read A to Z format and covers topics that many parents may experience, such as anger, bitterness, birthdays, Christmas, hope, signs, and more. If you have lost a child and are feeling hurt and lost, this book is a great starting point for you to acknowledge your loss, celebrate your child’s life and find hope.
Are you ready to begin your journey towards healing?"
I know what you might be thinking. What?! Accept this?! How dare you even suggest that Ijust accept the death of my child! Before you get angry, hear me out.
I know this is not how life is supposed to work—children should never die before their parents. My grandmother is 95 years old, and she and I had this conversation when Garrett died at age 8 and again when her son, my uncle, died at 58.
When grief experts discuss the stages of grief, acceptance often comes last. I'd like to propose that it should be first, middle, and last. The acceptance of your child's death allows you to move through the other stages. It allows you to take ownership of your feelings and move towards healing.
It seems fitting that acceptance begins this alphabetized glossary, for without acceptance there can be no healing, no remembering, and no moving forward.
Acceptance does not mean you are over it, nor does it mean that you know how you will live with it, and it certainly does not mean that you will forget your child.
Acceptance means that, as heartbreaking as it is, you know that you cannot bring your child back. However, you will continue to search for ways to keep your child alive through positive actions and celebrations.
Acceptance is the conscious choice of realizing that your relationship with your child has not ended; it has merely changed. It has changed from physically spending time together to mentally, emotionally, and spiritually spending the rest of your life on earth together.
You will likely accept your child's death with your head far sooner than you accept it with your heart, and that's okay. I know my head accepted Garrett's death a long time ago, but a few months back while setting the table for supper, I absentmindedly took five plates out of the cupboard. My heart needed a gentle reminder of our loss because it obviously wasn't so sure about this acceptance thing.
Your heart may need some gentle reminders too. Be kind and patient with yourself as you search for this place of acceptance.
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