Grief and Loss
What the caterpillar sees as the end, the butterfly sees as the beginning.
Grieving and mourning will come to all of us – it is unavoidable. Whether you are new to the journey of loss or have been on this road for awhile, I commend you for having the courage to look outside of yourself for support. I know first hand how hard it can be to trust a stranger with your sacred story.
I am not new to grief. From the age of three, I experienced a host of losses. As a young woman, I decided to turn my pain into healing and hope - this is why I believe, “Hope Heals.” I am a walking example of such.
I have been practicing grief counselling for sixteen years. My clinical area of expertise is complicated grief due to suicide, homicide, and accident, however, I am well versed in all areas of grief and loss:
- death of a loved one;
- miscarriage, stillbirth, neonatal and postnatal loss;
- loss of foster child(ren) and/or potential adoption;
- loss due to separation and/or divorce;
- anticipatory loss;
- loss of health for yourself or a loved one (a chronic or terminal illness);
- loss of your beloved pet.
Your grief experience is as unique as your finger prints. Because of this, how we work together is unique to you too. Over the years, I have integrated various elements from different theoretical perspectives: Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT), Mindfulness, Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), Solution Focused Therapy (SFT), and Motivational Interviewing. I practice a client centered approach and work from the premise that each person has it within themselves to heal and grow from difficult life circumstances. My goal is to help you heal your heart, one piece at a time.
Even in its darkest passages, the heart is unconquerable. It is important that the body survives, but it is more meaningful that the human spirit prevails.
- Dave Pelzer
If you have experienced trauma in your life, you know first hand how overwhelming emotions can be. You feel taxed to the limit. You can’t imagine having one more thing go wrong in your life because if it does, you might snap. Please know, you are not alone nor are you losing your mind, even if it feels like you are some days.
Trauma can arise from a variety of sources: emotional, physical, and/or sexual abuse; war; natural disasters; severe illness or injury (either for yourself or someone you love); death of a loved one; witnessing or being a victim of crime; suicide; homicide; and/or accidental deaths, etc.
Trauma affects every aspect of our being.
We are impacted physically
– panic attacks, sleep disturbances (sleep too much or too little), anxiety, inability to concentrate, fatigue, nightmares, eating too much or too little...
We are impacted emotionally
– sadness, anger, guilt, shame, regret, blame, fear...
We are impacted spiritually
– where is my place in this world now that this has happened to me? Can I ever be “me” again? Am I alone in this journey?...
What makes an event traumatic for you is based on the MEANING and VALUE you place on the event. For example, I may witness a dog being hit by a car on the street in front of my house. I become a puddle of emotions because when I was a little girl, my special pup was taken away from me without me being told - I didn’t get to say goodbye. My friend, who is standing next to me, witnesses the exact same event. She is upset that a dog was hit by a car, though she is able to move on easily with the rest of her day. An event becomes traumatic when we perceive it as such.
Educational Sessions / Workshops
If your workplace has experienced a death loss or traumatic event, we offer educational sessions and/or therapeutic support for your staff who have been impacted by it. All sessions are tailored to your unique work setting. Grief and/or trauma drop-in support groups can also be provided.
I met Cindy at the lowest time in my life. After losing my husband I attended three bereavement groups prior to Cindy’s. There was no comparison to the benefits and compassion I received while under her guidance. Her knowledge (both learned and experienced) and understanding eventually gave me hope and the wisdom to adjust to my new life. In the beginning I felt so alone and at a loss as to what my future held. Sharing with complete strangers did not feel comfortable at first. While family and friends are so important, they cannot totally understand unless they have been there. I made new friends and a real sense of belonging. I am learning a new way of life without my husband and an understanding that I will always miss him but look forward to what my life has in store for me. Thank you Cindy!