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Grief and Loss

Grief and Loss

When it comes to experiencing grief and loss, so many of us suffer alone and in silence.

It's not acceptable in our society to admit our emotions and because of this, we tend to live our whole lives suffering from unresolved grief.

Grief and loss is not just about losing a loved one through death. We can experience grief over the loss of so many things in our lives.

In this podcast episode, Grief Recovery Specialist, Diane Morgan, shares what grief is, why our response to loss is individual and not 'text book', why unresolved grief is affecting so many of us, and why it is something that we really need to address.

More...


Meet Diane

Diane Morgan is a Certified Advanced Grief Recovery Specialist. She provides both online and one-to-one in-person Grief Recovery Support Services.

Diane Morgan

Diane grew up in England then, in her early twenties, her passion for adventure lured her to sail around the Mediterranean and Caribbean. She finally washed ashore on the beautiful island of Martha's Vineyard where she has lived for nearly thirty years, happily raising her family and creating her own businesses.

Diane is a lifelong learner. She is a Women's Midlife Coach, Hypnotherapist, Aesthetician, and an Energy Healing Practitioner. 

Recognising that there is much grief in the world, Diane is excited to have found the Grief Recovery Institute, where she became a Certified Grief Recovery Specialist.

Knowing that the world is a big place, she then completed the Advanced Grief Recovery Specialist training and is now able to offer her services online to people all over the world.

Her personal and professional journeys have finally come together, allowing Diane to follow her passion to provide help and support to others so that they may find completion to their losses, move through their emotional pain and make room for joy and purpose to come back into their lives. 


How to Contact Diane

For more details on Diane's coaching programme and to reach out to her directly, please visit:

Website: https://www.givegriefachance.com/

Moving Beyond Grief Coaching Program: https://www.givegriefachance.com/grief-recovery-program.html

Give Grief a Chance Podcast: https://www.givegriefachance.com/listen

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/givegriefachance/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/give_grief_a_voice/ and https://www.instagram.com/dianemorgan9200/


Transcription

SUMMARY KEYWORDS: grief, loss, feelings, people, lost, life, Diane, feel, emotions, death, podcast, grieving, unresolved grief, conflicting feelings, share, person, affect, grief recovery, programme, died

SPEAKERS: Diane Morgan, Gillian Duncan

Gillian Duncan  00:00

Hello and welcome to the Clarity Junction podcast. In this episode, I am chatting to Advanced Grief Recovery Specialist, Diane Morgan. Sooner or later in life, we all have to face the powerful journey through loss and grief. It's just a part of life and something we cannot avoid. It is a topic however, that tends to be avoided in conversation, and we are usually expected to hide our feelings and emotions regarding our loss. In our society, we are given a set time to recover from a loss. Then after that time, others expect you to have moved on and healed. The subject is then swept under the carpet and we don't mention it again. For many of us, however, this can lead to a lot of unresolved areas in our healing process and can have a lasting impact on the many layers of our life. For this reason, I offer a warm welcome to Diane to the Clarity Junction podcast and embrace her topic of grief and loss. So, please join me in discovering what Diane will be sharing with us today. 

My name is Gillian Duncan, Positive Life and Wellbeing Coach, inspiring women to live the life they want, and I am delighted that you're here with me today.  

Hello, Diane, welcome to the Clarity Junction podcast.

Diane Morgan  01:28

Hello, Gillian, thank you for having me here. This is exciting.

Gillian Duncan  01:33

I'm so pleased that you're joining me today for this episode about grief and loss. This is a subject that we don't like to mention or be very open about. You know, we tend to hide these feelings and emotions and react to loss and grief with a stiff upper lip and just pretend that we are fine inside and out. And everybody seems to think that if they don't talk about it or bring the subject up, then the whole sorry event will just go away, and really, this couldn't be farther from the truth. So, that's why I am so glad that you have agreed to come and chat with me today. Grief and loss happens to all of us at one point in our life, and it's time that we approach the subject with more open heart and with more conversation, so that even more people can receive the care and support that they need, and deserve, after a loss in their life. So Diane, I would love if you could start by just explaining to our listeners a little bit about yourself and how you came to help and support other people recover from grief.

Diane Morgan  02:38

So, I am a Certified Grief Recovery Specialist, and basically what that means is that I've been trained to facilitate people through the Grief Recovery Programme. And the Grief Recovery Programme has been around for over 30 years, and you can find Grief Recovery Specialists in many, many countries. And I got into grief because, you know, I'm a Reiki Master, I do aesthetics, I do hypnotherapy and the one thing through my work with people is that I realised that everyone, everybody will tell a story, and most of the stories that I was hearing was that everybody experiences loss. And for me in 2008, I lost my dad, my mum and my brother all within eight months of each other. And that was when I, sort of, first allowed myself to say, 'Oh, this is grief'. But it was in that moment, because I had eight months of going back and forth to this, from the States to England to be with my family as they were dying, but it was in that time that I realised that, you know, I'd actually felt these feelings before. That death, sort of, opened the door for me to have this 'aha' moment is that I felt these feelings of loss before. So, you know, that, and I found the Grief Recovery Institute, and so it really led me to becoming a Grief Recovery Specialist and I love it. I love helping people let go of their emotional pain.

Gillian Duncan  04:37

That's quite some story and quite some journey that you've been on Diane. To lose three, so close to you, all of a sudden in one year, that must have been so extremely difficult for you. I can't even imagine how you must have been placed and also the fact that you live so far away from them and had to travel. That must have been a very hard time for you and your family. So, thank you so much for sharing that. I'm sure that there are other people listening who can really catch on to that time in your life and actually think, 'Gosh, yes, I've, I've lost loved ones close, back to back'. And that sometimes happens doesn't it? You know, we can't plan those things, we, we don't know when things like that are going to happen to us. And you know, that is all part of this whole grief scenario isn't it? It's so unexplained and it's not planned. You know, for me, I think of grief as being an almost indescribable, unique, powerful emotion. How do you think of grief? How would you define it? What would you say it was, exactly?

Diane Morgan  05:42

Well, the best definition of grief that I can share with you comes from the Grief Recovery Institute. So, I'll give you a quick rundown. So, one of the most basic, the most basic one is that grief is the normal and naturally emotional reaction to loss or change of any kind. Now if you think about what we've, round the world, what we've all been going through, with the Coronavirus, Black Lives Matter, I mean, we've got grief and loss in there. Right now, we are a world of grievers. And, you know, that being said, I think it's really important to know that any feelings, those feelings that you're having are normal and natural for you. And unfortunately, I think a big problem is that many of us have been socialised to believe that these types of feelings are abnormal and unnatural. Now another definition is that grief is the conflicting feelings caused by the end of, or the change in a familiar pattern of behaviour. And what that means is, like, when someone you love dies after suffering a long illness, you might feel a sense of relief that the suffering is over. And that's a positive feeling, even though it's associated with death. Now, at the same time, you'll probably realise that you can no longer see or touch that person, and those feelings can be very painful for you. Now, I remember when my dad was dying, I remember flying back to England, and walking into the hospital and seeing him in this bed, and it didn't look like my, like my dad. And I sat with him for a week, and every night I'd go home, and I'd pray, you know, 'Please take him'. Now, even though I didn't want him to leave, I couldn't bear the thought of seeing him like that, and I knew in my heart, that he wouldn't want to exist that way. And so, when he finally died, I had this huge sense of relief, and yet my heart was shattered into 1000 pieces, because I knew I'd never spend time with him again. I'd never get to visit him anymore or have those long chats and laugh together. So, for me, I remember those conflicting feelings because it was relief and grief, all intertwined. And yet, you know, those feelings of relief and pain are a totally normal response to death. Now, conflicting feelings also applies to divorce, because you might feel freedom, now, as you're no longer arguing with your partner, and that's positive. You know, however, you might also feel that you'll never find anyone as beautiful or as good provider, and so those feelings of freedom and fear, they are also a natural response to loss. Now, another definition is that grief is the feeling of reaching out for someone who's always been there, only to discover when you need him or her one more time, they're no longer there. And I think this definition is pretty clear in its meaning, because it could refer to the death of a long term spouse, and it could also apply to the death of a parent who clearly has been there from the beginning of your life. Now, it can also be reversed and used for a very different painful situation. Like, if you've never been in a good relationship, then you can say, grief is a feeling of reaching out for someone who's never been there for me, only to discover that when I need them one more time, they still aren't there for me. You see, it doesn't have to be that the other person's died, but that they're still emotionally unavailable for you, as it's always been, as they've always been. So, to sum it up, you know, there are so many definitions of grief, but the important thing, I think, to remember is that we're all individual, and we'll all experience and express our grief uniquely, and in our own time and our own way. Grief's not the same for everyone. It's based on emotions, and it's based on your personal relationship to who or what you've lost. And this is evident when you look at family members who experienced the same loss. Now, each relationship is different, even if it's the same family. So, each person's response to that loss will be very different. You see, we can't tell someone that we know how they feel because we don't. We only know how we felt when we experience loss. It's important to know that some responses associated with grief might be things like reduced concentration, a sense of numbness, changed eating and sleeping habits. You know, many people feel like they've jumped on this emotional roller coaster. So, if you're grieving, please be gentle with yourself. Try to take care of yourself as best as you can, I know it's hard, but also accept a helping hand when it's offered, because you don't have to be alone on this journey.

Gillian Duncan  11:57

That's such great advice and it's so diverse, what you've just said, and there's so many different angles and so many different ways that you can describe grief. And when you were talking there, I was remembering my, my own situations, and when you mentioned that your behaviours or your thoughts or your habits and, or everything, your whole response to grief is different each time, you know, I've lost people I've been extremely close to, and yet each time the grief process has been so different. I remember sudden deaths in the family, for me they were very impactful. There was the whole shock element. The, 'What do you mean they're not there anymore? Of course, they're there'. The whole feeling of guilt because I didn't perhaps say the things I should have said before they passed away, because I didn't expect them to pass away. I thought we'd have more time together. The whole readjustment of life after the person had gone, because you just, sort of, expected them to be there for a number of years and you expected to do other things together. And then there's the other grief of when you lose somebody that you know that it's going to happen. It's the end of a long journey for that person. They have maybe been in pain or discomfort, or they've, for example, with my own grandmother, she had Alzheimer's, so she was not the person who she was when she passed away. She didn't remember anybody. She didn't know anything. She just wasn't the person. And as you mentioned, for the family, it was a relief for her. And it was also relief for us, because going to visit somebody in that condition is heartbreaking each and every visit, and it's, it takes a lot of energy. And then of course, when that person dies, you feel guilty for even feeling that because you still love them, and you still want them to be there, but you want them to be in the way that they were prior to their illness. So again, for me, I've had a lot of guilt, you know, coming through from that. A lot of confusion, conflicting emotions, and, yeah, I mean, really, as you said, it really affects your day to day life for some time afterwards. Because once you have experienced the first death, you know, in your family that, whatever age that may be, things don't ever, they don't seem the same ever again. Because it's something that you've really got to stand up and address and, and witness, you've got to go through that process, and all of a sudden, this little bubble of, 'Everything lasts forever', is shattered and you have to deal with that in one way or another. So, yeah, oh gosh, when you were just mentioning all those things there, I just was going through all these experiences in, in my own life. But, as you mentioned, you know, we always think, we tend to think, I should say, of loss as being the death of somebody, and the fact that somebody is no longer there in our lives, but as you mentioned, there are more types of losses, and those losses can be anything from, you know, divorce, they could be loss of a job or also finances. I wonder if you could expand a little bit more on those areas?

Diane Morgan  15:11

I'd love to, yes, because you know, there are so many losses that we will experience at some point in our life, you know. So, while death and divorce are the most obvious ones, you know, there are over 40 losses that are considered to produce grief. So, let's start with loss of a pet. You know, losing a pet can be an emotionally devastating experience for a lot of people.

Gillian Duncan  15:41

Oh, it sure can.

Diane Morgan  15:42

Yip, and I think that people are afraid to say that they're heartbroken when they've lost the pet, for fear of looking silly or weak. I mean, quite often they're met with, 'Oh, it was just a dog or a cat. You can get another one', and yet for them, it could have been their best friend. Next, we have retirement. Now, even though most people look forward to retirement, when they eventually get there, many of them feel like they've lost their identity, and that is the last transition in their lives. And that can cause them to be filled with worry and stress. And a lot of people even feel depressed. And so, I think it's really important to prepare well in advance for retirement. And, as you said before, financial change or loss. You know, it can be very scary, because for many, it's not just about the money, it's, it's about a lifestyle. Now, we also have miscarriage. Now, I had three of them. Loss of fertility. And there's even an empty nest, because when your kids have grown up and leave home, so many people experience a huge sense of loss, and actually there is something called 'Empty Nest Syndrome'. And then this deployment. Watching and waving goodbye to a loved one or go off to war, or even yourself heading off to war. Addiction. Living with an addict or losing someone to addiction. Moving. Now I can tell you that, even to this day, my heart pangs because I felt that when my family died, I'd lost my ties to home. I'd lost my ties to England. I've lost my roots. I felt like they were the glue to my past, and so I felt lost, even though I love where I live, it was still you know, I miss my, the familiarity of my family and friends. Then of course we have health issues. Now, it can be your own health, or it can be the change in the health of a loved one or a close friend. You know, and even waiting for results from a test can produce feelings of grief. And then we have childhood abuse, and with that can come these intangible feelings of grief, like loss of trust, loss of safety, loss of control of your own body. Or you might have even been brought up in a home where you were neglected. And so, we have loss of love. And then you know, for so many people who've experienced many, many, many different losses, you know, all of that can bring about loss of faith. So, you see, there are tonnes of losses that we can all experience throughout our lives, and yet most people never associate grief with anything but death.

Gillian Duncan  19:23

It's so interesting, and I know that we have spoken about loss, between us, before. We've been friends for a while, and you know that I have grieved for my health, in particular. You know, that's just one example. You know, I've had poor health and chronic illness since I was very young. And so, when I was little, just like everybody else, you know, you have big dreams for life. There's things that you want to achieve. There's things that you want to do. And each time you know, I felt I was getting somewhere you know, I was working so hard, then my health would play up or I'd end up in hospital, I'd end up with operations, I'd end up with a new condition or an injury. And, you know, this really sort of got huge in my 20's. And, I'm now my 40's and I've felt that over the years, the majority of my life has been spent in hospitals, spent fighting my illness, trying to find out what's wrong and trying to find, you know, paths to heal, and it has really dominated the, you know, the best years of my life, what you would, you would say, my youth. And so, I know that we've spoken about this and that, you know, I I'm right, to feel upset. I'm right to feel angry. I'm right to have all these emotions, about having this poor health and it is grief. I'm right to, to grieve over those years that I have lost. But it is so important to address those thoughts and those emotions, because without doing that I can't accept the life that I've had. I can't move on, I can't come to terms with it, and I can't embrace it and make my life more positive and see the positive aspects in those years as well. I can't put it away. If I focus on it all the time and feel the grief for all the time, then I can't remember the good times that happens in those years. So, you know, I just want to thank you for the help and advice that you have given me to address that area of grief in my own life. There's a whole lot of conflicting views and information about grief out there, isn't there and there's all different misleading information concerning the topic of grief. I was wondering if you would be able to address some of those areas?

Diane Morgan  21:47

Absolutely. Well, you know, I think grief and loss is one of the most misunderstood and neglected topics. And so therefore, I think we're a lot of us are filled with so much misinformation. I mean, first off, we're afraid to talk, as you said before, we're, you know, a lot of people are afraid to talk about grief. In fact, they hate that word. So, what I find is that most people try to deal with grief intellectually. But grief is about a broken heart. It's not about a broken brain. And so, all efforts to heal the heart with the head fail, because grief is emotional. You see, most of us are taught, growing up, to deal with grief intellectually. You know, quite often you'll hear people say things like, 'Oh, she's in a better place now', or you know, if you have a breakup in a relationship, I mean, I remember saying it and being told, oh there were plenty more fish in the sea. I also have a friend who lost a son, and she was told, 'Be thankful you have other children'.

Gillian Duncan  23:03

OK. Yeah, that's, yes. That's just not, this is not the thing to say, is it?

Diane Morgan  23:08

No, you know, and I mean, intellectually, it might be true. But you know, when you say things like that, it doesn't help the griever. And in fact, it can make them start to question their feelings. So, for me, growing up, I learned to avoid, because we didn't talk about feelings. In fact, you know, for me, I think, I don't think I ever heard the word 'grief' in our house. And I have to say, I became so good avoiding. I never went to a funeral till I was 49, and that was my dad's. You see, and as a society, we're not really encouraged to share our sad feelings. We're usually only encouraged to share our positive and happy ones. We're taught how to acquire things, but most of us don't have a clue what to do when we lose things. Now, perhaps some of you have heard of the work of Dr. Elisabeth Kübler-Ross, and she wrote a book about death and dying. And, in this book, she identified five stages of grief, which is denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. But what many people don't know, is that those stages were never meant to be applied to the grieving process, but to the person who was facing death. You see, because grief doesn't follow any rules or patterns. But her work is used to help grieving people, and again, I feel like it's misinformation. Grief cannot be neatly categorised. When someone dies, there's certainly no denial, or if you get divorced or you lose your finances, well that's pretty final. And yes, you might feel angry, because grief brings with it so many different emotions. And, you know, it can affect you physically, mentally and spiritually. And so often griefs mislabeled as depression, because that's, most of the time society will use any other word but grief. So, if you're suffering a loss, and you go to a doctor, the chances are you'll be diagnosed as depressed and given antidepressant drugs. Even when you're not actually clinically depressed. Now, for me, I believe that medication gets in the way of recovering from loss, because it stops you from feeling your emotions and working your way through them. Now, don't get me wrong, I do believe that everybody has to do what feels right for them.

Gillian Duncan  26:26

Absolutely. I think that is obviously a very personal decision to make, but I completely understand where you're coming from. Because, really, depression is one thing, but grief is a combination of so many things that you can just put your finger on at that one time. It's, I don't know, when I think of grief, I really do feel that it's almost like somebody just picks you up by your collar and dangles you over a cliff and you're expected to know what to do, what to say, how to act, and how to get yourself back on that cliff edge and be safe again. And how are you supposed to do that? How are you supposed to know, if everything around you is changed? And you may feel that it's only in your own mind, but it's, it's not, its circumstances have changed, habits have changed, everything around you has changed. So, it's, it is relearning. And, by taking medication, it may help, however, it might just numb everything that you're supposed to be feeling and supposed to be going through. I mean, that's, that's my opinion on that.

Diane Morgan  27:31

Mm hmm. Mm hmm. Totally agree.

Gillian Duncan  27:34

So, this is a great point to ask you, what is really the impact of unresolved grief?

Diane Morgan  27:42

So, I think this is a big one, because unresolved grief is absolutely everywhere. See, it's cumulative, and it's cumulatively negative. And it's caused by a variety of life events. I mean, as I mentioned, earlier there are over 40 life experiences that can cause grief. And, for so many people, those past losses that they've experienced, probably remain unresolved, meaning that they've never been addressed or dealt with. And rather than feeling and dealing with that pain, they try to push it down deep inside of themselves in order to avoid an escape. But those feelings never go away. And of course, the more losses we experience, the bigger the pile gets. And when people desperately try not to feel, when that pain becomes too overwhelming, escaping can mean turning to unhealthy coping habits like alcohol, drugs, food, gambling, binge watching TV, shopping and overspending, anything that will distract them from the sad and painful feelings. However, it's only short-term relief. As I say, those emotions will never go away and eventually, they will come back up to the surface. And the habit that maybe you've created, might be something that you really struggle to stop. You know, I remember, for me, when I lost my family, my escape was shopping, retail therapy, I believe they call it. In that moment, it felt great, until I had to face my credit card bill

Gillian Duncan  29:55

Yeah.

Diane Morgan  29:56

You know, and then reality hit me that I'd spent all of this money on a bunch of stuff that I really didn't need. Now, if you know someone who's grieving and they're carrying around unresolved grief, they might actually pretend and tell you that they're over it, but you can tell if someone's still grieving, you know, there are signs to watch for. They might be preoccupied with sad or painful memories, you know, their losses, always the topic of conversation, or they might refuse to talk about loss, and they might shut right down. And then, as I mentioned earlier, they could have turned to unhealthy habits. There could be an increase of food and drugs, any anti-social behaviours. They could have a lack of energy, because unresolved grief can make you feel very tired. I mean, if you think about it, if you're carrying around this heavy load of unwanted emotions and you carry them around for years, over time, it becomes emotionally draining. Now, they might have difficulty concentrating due to being preoccupied with their memories. And for some people, all they want to do is be alone. and so, they isolate from friends and family. And, you know, too much time alone, it's good to have some alone time, I think we all need it, but too much alone time is not good. And, it's also important to remember that unresolved grief can be caused by pretty much anything big or small. So, if it's left untreated, the long term effects can be devastating because it can affect your relationships, it can affect your work and your hobbies, and eventually, it will catch up and it affects your health. And I think the biggest thing to do is acknowledge and validate your feelings, because, you know, you have the right to feel the way you do, we all do. Your feelings, everybody's feelings, are natural, even if others don't understand. And remember, I think it's really important. when you're ready, to reach out. Whether it's to a special friend or a family member. Find someone who can listen without judgement. Find that person that you can trust, and you can turn to if you need a shoulder to cry on, because it's really, really important, like you said earlier, to give your grief of voice. And, of course, there's always a Grief Recovery Programme, which is what I offer. And when I say 'recovery', what that means is, taking action to feel better. Recovery means claiming your circumstances instead of circumstances claiming your happiness. It means acknowledging that it's okay to feel sad from time to time, and it's okay to talk about your feelings. You know, recovering from a significant loss isn't easy. It's not an easy task, and it takes willingness and courage to do it. And like I said earlier, the Grief Recovery Programme has been around for over 40 years, and it's offered pretty much all over the world. And so, what I offer is a one on one, in person or online, and, of course, it's completely confidential, and it's a proven action based programme, that gives you the tools to support and work through and release any of that emotional pain from a loss. And you know, it doesn't matter if your loss was recent, or in the past, because it's never too soon or too late to reach out and live a life that you were meant to live.

Gillian Duncan  34:39

I just love what you do, Diane, and thank you for letting people know about your recovery one to one sessions. And, you know, I just want to go back to what you mentioned about the fact that eventually grief can affect your health, and, you know, I know this firsthand. You know, I've been through a whole situation, myself, where in the space of six months, I had lost two grandmother's, I'd gone through an anaphylactic reaction, my husband had gone through redundancy, I'd taken on a new job, and I had to deal with a whole load of different things in my personal life that were associated to, to the deaths of my family members and also the adjustments in my own home life with, you know, the redundancy and new jobs and kids, you know, everyday sort of concerts, sports days, homework, everything, and it was really no surprise, you know, within 12 months of all those things happening that my health had been hit. And I ended up getting very, very poorly. Because, I remember by the redundancy and by the, by the second death in my family, I had really buried my emotions. I had gone from being really an emotional person when if, I was facing grief. I would be in a corner crying my heart out and, you know, that's how I would deal with loss, to somebody saying, 'Right! Let's just get on with it. We have to do this, we have to do that', and burying any emotions attached with the loss, just making sure that everything was okay and everybody else was fine, and things we're going to carry on as normal. And within that time, as I said, it really affected my health, and I ended up having a series of operations only a few months after that, with a very uncertain future. And I know, I just know, that, that was due to the stress levels that I was experiencing through those losses. So, I really feel that I could really have done with reaching out to somebody and saying, you know, something, I'm not handling this process the same as I normally do, and I'm not crying and I'm not feeling a range of emotions. I'm just feeling this one determined phase that things must get done as normal. And perhaps, if I had done that and opened up, then my health wouldn't be so strongly affected. It wouldn't have been, everything been so consumed inside. So yes, I truly support the idea of going for sessions and particularly with yourself, Diane, because you have such a wonderful way of connecting with people and really helping them to open up and to go on that path of recovery from grief. And as you say, it's not something that you can just turn on and off, as you would do a switch, it is something that, you know, it takes time and that time is, is different for each individual. I just love what you do, and I'm so thankful that you are there helping people get through this process.

Diane Morgan  37:37

Thank you, Gillian, I appreciate that. I love this work. I really do. I think it's such an important and needed piece of work to help people to really give their grief or voice.

Gillian Duncan  37:53

Yes, it's not something that we should all just be, you know, stiff upper lipping, should I say. Something that we should really be addressing.

Diane Morgan  38:01

Absolutely.

Gillian Duncan  38:01

It's not something to be swept under the carpet and, you know, obviously 'grownups don't cry', and that's just rubbish.

Diane Morgan  38:09

Right.

Gillian Duncan  38:09

We, need to remember we're just vulnerable, just like everybody else.

Diane Morgan  38:13

Absolutely. And you know, that opens up another whole podcast about myths, because there are so many myths around grief, and like you said, 'Be strong, stay busy', you know, they're just myths that we, are ingrained in us, that we learn that really do not serve us because again, all we do is we just avoid.

Gillian Duncan  38:40

That's right? And also, you know, there was one thing that kept in my mind when I was keeping my stiff upper lip and keeping everything ticking on was, 'Oh, you know, my gran wanted me to cry', and, you know, she would have, if she knew it was going to have more of an effect on me. As she would have said, 'You handle it in your own way, in your own time'.

Diane Morgan  39:00

Right.

Gillian Duncan  39:00

And so, that voice from, you know, that we can no longer hear, you make it up. It's your voice that's taken over. And so it yes, we need to just, we need to be able to speak about this more openly in our society, and we need to be able to reach out and say that this is okay, this is normal. Everybody goes through it. But we've all got different experiences. So, let's share them. And let's see where we can go with it. And let's see if we can support each other through these times.

Diane Morgan  39:29

Absolutely.

Gillian Duncan  39:31

Now, I will also mention that you have got a fantastic podcast called, 'Give Grief A Chance'. I love this podcast, because it covers amazing information, advice and stories. And you've also got an Instagram account, which is brilliant. It's a project called, 'Give Grief A Voice', which you've mentioned as well, you've said you need to give grief a voice, through this podcast. Perhaps you could tell us more about your podcast and also your Instagram account.

Diane Morgan  39:58

Sure. Well, my podcast, I keep them short and sweet. And that's where I like to, you know, I have people who email me, and they share their stories. I like to break grief down so that they can understand different aspects of grief and know that it's okay to share their feelings, to talk about it. And so, for 'Give Grief A Voice' on Instagram, this project really is, and grief isn't an easy sell, I have to tell you. People, as soon as they hear that word, they usually shut down, but what I really want to do with 'Give Grief A Voice' is help people to share their story, share their loss. So, I ask them to, they have a little piece of paper that says, 'I've lost... ', and they fill in the blank. They write out their story, and they share it and that way, we can all connect and we can all, we have this connection to know that, you know, we're not alone on this journey. We all have these feelings of some sort, you know, because there are so many different feelings connected with grief. And I just think it's a wonderful way to help to give your grief a voice.

Gillian Duncan  41:24

Absolutely. And, I know that I've got my picture there, on that account.

Diane Morgan  41:28

Yes, you do.

Gillian Duncan  41:29

I do. I have my picture there with my sign. And it's so empowering, to be honest with you. I felt so good when I had written it out on the paper. That was the, for me the first step, you know, thinking, 'Oh my gosh, well, I've lost lots of things in my life, but what has, what's the one thing that's really, I feel is really holding me back. The one thing that's really, sort of, overshadowing me at the moment?' And when I wrote it down on that piece of paper, I really felt so much lighter, like a weight had been lifted off, that I've actually said, 'This is something that is bothering me. Okay, this is something that I'm thinking but never saying, and, I know that I'm not alone in this, so, here's my voice. It's on a piece of paper'. And we took that picture, my son helped me, he took the picture of me. And, and we've got that on, on your Instagram account along with lots of other people who have

Diane Morgan  42:22

That's right.

Gillian Duncan  42:23

have shared to their, their loss.

Diane Morgan  42:26

Yeah, you know, there's a 90-year-old lady on there that, that shared her loss. And she said, 'You know, I've never told anybody this'.

Gillian Duncan  42:33

Yeah. Exactly. This is why we want to do this, isn't it?

Diane Morgan  42:37

Yes.

Gillian Duncan  42:37

This is why we're having this podcast today. This is why we have these conversations because we want to inspire others to realise that they're not alone, and that they can share their voice and they can tell other people. It's not unique to them. This is not this bizarre thing. This is not strange, it's not unusual. It's nothing like that.

Diane Morgan  43:04

No.

Gillian Duncan  43:05

And even if it was, if it was, it is still OK.

Diane Morgan  43:06

Absolutely.

Gillian Duncan  43:06

It's still OK to share it.

Diane Morgan  43:08

Absolutely. It is what it is.

Gillian Duncan  43:10

Yes, exactly. It is what it is. You say it so well.

Diane Morgan  43:15

You know, but it's great when you can share it.

Gillian Duncan  43:19

Oh gosh, it is a massive weight. I can honestly, from my own personal experience, it's a massive weight lifted. So, I do encourage everybody to pop over to Instagram, follow you and submit their picture. And even if you don't think it's, you know, substantial enough or, 'Oh my gosh, there's other people on there that have, you know, they've lost more than me', that's just rubbish. Everybody, basically, loses something and it affects them in different ways, and how something has affected you, nobody is ever going to criticise or question.

Diane Morgan  43:50

That's right. There's no comparing.

Gillian Duncan  43:53

Not at all. Not at all.

Diane Morgan  43:55

You know so...

Gillian Duncan  43:56

So, I will share all your contact details on the post page for this podcast, and that's over at clarityjunction.com, and this is a page that will include all the links to through to your Facebook page, your group, your Instagram accounts, your podcast, and of course, your website. So, this will be available for anyone who wishes to find out more about what you do, and how they can find you and seek your help on their own journey through their grief and loss.

Diane Morgan  44:25

Gillian, thank you so much for allowing me to talk about this subject that is near and dear to my heart. Thank you. Thank you.

Gillian Duncan  44:36

Thank you so much for taking the time to chat with me today, Diane. It's been really great to chat, as you say, so openly about a subject that we tend to keep hidden and under wraps, and I do hope, that by talking about it, will help those listening, just to have a better understanding about grief and loss, and to offer those who are perhaps going through this journey at this precise moment, really, to give them some assurance that they are definitely not alone when it comes to how they are feeling. That there is help out there, and it's there should they wish it, and that they needn't feel that they're taking this journey all on their own. So, thank you so much for sharing with us, Diane. I've loved talking to you, as I always do. I always love chatting with you. And, thank you so much for the work that you do.

Diane Morgan  45:20

Thank you.

Gillian Duncan  45:22

That's all for this episode. My sincerest thanks to Diane Morgan, for sharing her knowledge of grief and loss with us. It's often such a hard topic to discuss, so I am grateful to Diane for being here as a guest today. To find out how to connect with Diane, please visit clarityjunction.com/griefandloss. There you will find links to Diane's website, podcast and social media pages.  

If you enjoy listening to the Clarity Junction podcast, then let others know about it and subscribe so that you never miss an episode. 

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Bye for now and keep being awesome.


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