Will I survive? Will I ever be happy again? These are questions that Harriet Hodgson asked herself after she was left to raise her twin grandchildren, while grieving for four family members, including her daughter. Harriet reminds us that we are not alone in our grief and, though losses may define our lives, they will not destroy them.
Harriet Hodgson has been a freelancer for 37 years and is the author of 35 books. She is a member of the Association of Health Care Journalists and a contributing writer for the Open to Hope Foundation website, The Grief Toolbox website, and The Caregiver Space website. Hodgson has appeared on more than 180 talk shows, including CBS Radio, and dozens of television stations, including CNN. A popular speaker, she has given presentations at public health, Alzheimer's and bereavement conference. Her work is cited in Who's Who of American Women, World Who's Who of Women, Contemporary Authors, and other directories. She lives in Rochester, MN with her husband, John. Please visit www.harriethodgson.com for more information about this busy author and grandmother.
Because I am the age I am, I have many established roles: wife, mother, grandmother, writer, speaker, and community volunteer. Each of these roles has sub-roles and they can involve lots of detail work. When I look back at my life, I see one of my earlier roles was to be a good mother to our daughters. As the years passed this role changed to being a good caregiver and guardian to my twin grandchildren. Now I have a new role, to be the best caregiver I can be for my disabled husband. I think we need to be aware of the changing roles that come to us in life, examine these roles, and decide what we need to do. Some roles will remain, of course. Though my elder daughter is deceased, this doesn't change the fact that I am her mother. Have you checked your life roles lately? Knowing established roles and new roles will help you carry them out to the best of your ability. Some roles may surprise you.
Happy Again!: Your New and Meaningful Life After Loss
Life roles fall into two groups, new and established. The death of your loved one added a new role – mourner – to your list. You dreaded this role and now it has come to you. Worse, people are uncomfortable with the role, indeed, they are impatient, and expect you to recover in three months or so. Nobody can recover from loss in such a short time.