October 2014
Events this Month: 71

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Retha
13 Oct : 22:23
Monthly support group meeting for all bereaved parents: Thursday 16 October 2014 at the Brooklyn Methodist Church, Brooklyn at 19:00

Retha
24 Mar : 10:51
Thank you to Nick Spurway and his lovely wife Trina for their wonderful supportive message of hope and all the parents and granny who was present at Thursday's meeting.

Retha
19 Mar : 08:18
Monthly Support Group Meeting Thursday 20 March 19:00
Botshelo House at the Brooklyn Methodist Church 209 Murray Str, Brooklyn
Topic: From a Bereaved father to another bereaved father - a message of hope.
Guest Speaker Nick Spurway

Retha
17 Jul : 12:44
Monthly Support Group Meeting
Thursday 18 July 19:00
Botshelo House at the Brooklyn Methodist Church, Brooklyn
All bereaved parents welcome.

Retha
08 Jul : 08:54
"When life gives you a hundred reasons to cry
Show life that you have a thousand reasons to smile"

Retha
20 Jun : 15:01
Our discussion tonight will be on Family Dynamics after the death of a child/children in the family.

Retha
19 Jun : 16:31
Monthly support group meeting, Thursday 20 June 2013 at 19:00
Venue: Botshelo House, Brooklyn Methodist Church, Brooklyn

Retha
16 Jun : 10:47
We honor all fathers in the remembrance of their children.

Retha
16 Jun : 10:45
Father's Day
In honor of all our bereaved fathers for which this day must be so very difficult.

Retha
22 May : 14:54
22.5.2013 Talk at Inter Trauma Nexus : Freedom to Grief


Angel of death come calling
WHEN THE ANGEL OF DEATH COME CALLING AT SOMEONE ELSES DOOR.WHAT TO DO AND WHAT NOT TO SAY!
The 7th September 2008, it will be 3 years since our son past away, he contracted a virus in his heart mussel and in a question of 3 days he past away before the doctors could diagnose what was wrong with him, it happened so suddenly and was totally unexpected.  He was a healthy little boy!  Our world fell apart and so much anger and resentment was felt by us towards the people we loved due to things they said and did.

In the past couple of years I have learned that people don't know what to say and do regarding the loss of a child and therefore they say things without thinking, because they just don't know any better.  Let's face it losing a mother or father or even a spouse is hard, but losing a child is unnatural.

I would like to give some advise (I am not a professional, only a mother who has lost a child) the hardest thing that could ever happen to any parent.  It has almost been 3 years and there is not a day that goes by that I don't think of Dean or miss him or even shed a tear about him.  He was my only child at that stage and we were such a happy family. Only a week prior to his death we were spending the day at Gold Reef City and he had his first merry go round ride on his own…

THE THINGS PEOPLE SAY!

After he passed away people said:

  "God has taken the most beautiful flowers for his garden"    
  "There is a plan, even if we don't understand it"
  "At least he / she did not suffer"
  "He / She is in a better place"

I understand the above is the appropriate thing to say, because this is what is taught to us by our parent, and there parent taught them… but these are not the appropriate or right things to say to a parent whose child has past away…

I appreciated the people that came to me and said:  "I don't know what to say to you, but if you need me I am here for you"

I have had people come up to me once they have found out and said to me: "if something like this would happened to me I would go out of my mind, I would not be able to live" 

People!!!! This is the most hurtful thing to say, do you think that any parent who has lost a child does not feel like there life has ended, that they don't know why the sun and moon persist on coming up each day as if nothing has changed… they feel like they are the only people in the world feeling this pain, feeling this loss, why don't you hear of other people's children dying… it seems that this is a topic that just gets brushed under the carpet as if it does not happen… it does! And it hurts!!!
 

THE THINGS PEOPLE DO!

When Dean passed away my house was filled with flowers, they came from every where.  This is a nice sentiment, who doesn't like receiving flowers.  But when a child dies and you come home to that empty house where all his / her things are you can barely get out of bed, you don't sleep, you don't make food, you go through the motions of life without existing…

Think about this:  flowers die, would you like to have another reminder of death in your house… (Again this is my personal opinion)

My suggestions are these:  
                                               

1.
        Send not perishable foods or food that can be frozen
.

My husband and I did not cook we ate little but I remember receiving a  food basket that was sent from my employer at that time that was filled with nuts and dried fruit and snacks. This is what we ate, the neighbors brought food to us (people I have never met but they new my child as he stayed at home with the nanny…).   I can until this day still remember the people who comforted with food.   I can't remember anyone who sent flowers, although I knew a lot of people did.


2.        Books written by parents that have lost children. 
We found that these books, helped us not feel so alone in losing a child, this brought comfort to us.  If you don't know what to say go to the nearest book store and rather buy one of these books.


3.        There are people who know, ask for help if you need to:
At some stage of the struggle every parent needs to talk to someone, and there is an organization called "The Compassionate Friend" is a support group for bereaved Parents, Siblings & Grandparents (These are parents that have lost someone they love… they know what you are feeling, you are not alone!)  Keep this information at hand for when they do need to talk to someone…

http://www.compassionatefriends.org.za


Johannesburg072 798 1202011 440 6322
LenasiaRoseline Ananmalay011-852 5344
LaudiumVani Muthaya012 374 4867
SowetoCharlotte011 932 6597
West RandGladys Gagliardi011 787 7876
East RandBarbara Dobson011 827 6035
PretoriaRetha Naude-De Jager082 441 6360
NelspruitDebbie Lowther 013 745-7886
DurbanSharon Engelbrech031- 466 5572
BloemfonteinRichard Morris051 522 1713
Cape TownCynthia Lassen021 553 0038
East LondonMyrtle Fleming043 721 0406
KimberlyNoel Lingham053 832 9206
Port ElizabethMarius Venter041 358 1318
Somerset WestAlta Volschenk021 856 0717

Last Word:

If you lose a child the one person (if you don't have other children) that reminds you of your loss is a spouse. So many marriages end up in divorce after the death of a child, my marriages was nearly one of them… I ran away from home, my husband my family, I thought if I put enough distance between us and not love, I will not hurt…

Space is a good thing but in the right environment go to a friend you can trust, your mother / sister or brother, it is so easy to start believing a new life will heal old wounds… 

Men and Woman grieve differently… How do you console a spouse when you are unable to console yourself? There is no easy answer to this question… but I had a husband that never gave up and with counseling and making a conscious decision to live  I am happy to report that we are still married and doing well.  We have been blessed with two beautiful children a daughter named Jade (20 months) and a son named Ethan Dean (4 months).  They have healed a part of our broken hearts but will never replace what we have lost.  They have made a home of what was only a house after Dean passed away…

Time heals although it does not and will not ever make the pain go away, it becomes bearable.  Life forces you to go on and one can only move on once you yourselves make the decision to do so.  No parent will ever understand the death of there child and no amount of reasoning or rationalizing it, will make it the pain go away.  Acceptance is your only choice.

My hope for this article is this.  I would like to know that the loss of my child has taught me that people do care, that people do want to help, but they just don't know what to say or do… I hope that this article brings new insight for those who do not know what to say and what to do?

By Charlotte Nel


In loving memory of
Dean Edwin Nel
2002/11/13 to 2005/09/07
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LeAnne
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