What Anger Taught Me

What anger taught me is a precious lesson I will carry with me all my life. In my twenties and thirties, anger was my weapon of choice. Growing up with an alcoholic father and a people-pleasing mother, I soon realized that being angry prevented others from taking advantage of me. Anger helped me feel powerful, strong, and…

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How Does Attachment Affect Grief?

How does attachment affect grief? Should we remain unattached to avoid the pain of loss? I once received a great question from a workshop participant. She was struggling through the loss of a beloved friend. Here’s the question she asked me.  “Should I avoid attachment so that I avoid the pain of loss?” The Buddhist…

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The No. 1 Reason Why We Don’t Heal

The No. 1 reason why we don’t heal is actually a simple one. It’s something we can change with intention and awareness. About fifteen years ago, I had a pain in my gut that just refused to go away. It was a case of bad acidity. It kept me from enjoying the foods I loved,…

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3 Mistakes That Complicate Your Grief Experience

3 mistakes that complicate your grief experience make it harder for you to heal and create all kinds of judgments about your grieving process. When we’re grieving, we look for anything that will stop the pain. In a hurry to get to the other side of the grief experience, we can get tripped up by…

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Does Grief have a Purpose?

why grief

Does grief have a purpose? Does it move us toward a better version of ourselves? Every sad ending contains the seeds of a new happy beginning. I know this for sure and have lived through it myself. In a recent phone call, this truth was revealed to me one more time. One of my jobs…

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Finding Gratitude in Your Hardest Moments

grief and gratitude

Finding gratitude in your hardest moments takes conscious practice. When the death of a loved one knocks us down, gratitude is the farthest thing from our minds.  And it is okay to honor that you don’t feel it. More likely, you’re angry, bitter, and feeling abandoned by your loved one in some sense. Feelings aren’t always…

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Dealing with grief on Mother’s Day

motherless daughters

I write this post with tears streaming down my face. Dealing with grief on Mother’s Day is always hard. It reminds me that the hole in my soul will never go away, no matter how many years go by. It reminds me of the love and tenderness with which my mother nourished me, something that helps me…

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Turning My Pain into Purpose

losing amma

Turning my pain into purpose is the only way I’ve known to transcend the grief of my mother’s loss. I’ve been in Chennai, India, for two weeks now. This is my first trip back home after both my parents went home to their Maker. My mother in January 2009, my father in August 2010. In…

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Wishes for someone Grieving

wishes for the grieving heart

Wishes for the Grieving and Healing Heart opens with a heartwarming story of the water bug that turns into a dragonfly–a perfect metaphor for the transformation from physical form to spirit. It heralds a significant truth: When you lose someone you love, life will never be the same; you will never be the same. But…

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Coping with Grief during the Holidays

no heart for holidays

Coping with grief during the holidays takes a lot of energy. Diwali, the festival of lights, is to India what Christmas is to the West. The first Diwali after my mother passed away in January of 2009 was the hardest. It was her favorite festival. In the countdown to it, she’d get really busy drawing…

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