Letter: Here to help
I wanted to write and say thank you to Jud Haims for including me in his recent column about grief and loss. It is true that our community has experienced a remarkable amount of loss in the past couple weeks. We are all feeling differing amounts of pain and sadness in relation to the friends and family that we have lost. My name is Celynn McClarrinon and I am a licensed social worker and a certified grief recovery specialist.
Many years ago, Elisabeth Kubler-Ross wrote a book entitled “On Death and Dying.” The book identified five stages that a dying person goes through when they are told that they have a terminal illness. Haims wrote about them in his article. For many years, in the absence of any other helpful material, well-meaning people incorrectly assigned those same stages to the grief that follows a death or loss. They simply called them the five stages of grief. In a podcast I listened to recently, I learned that Kubler-Ross’ co-author to the book added a sixth stage, which I find very relevant. It is called finding meaning.
Kessler says this stage goes beyond the first five and can transform grief into a more peaceful and hopeful experience. My work with the Grief Recovery Method doesn’t not emphasize any time zones or stages of grief. I prefer to help each griever find their own truthful expression of the thoughts and feelings that may be keeping them from participating in their own lives. Although a griever might experience some or all of those feeling stages, it is not a correct or helpful basis for dealing with the conflicting feelings caused by loss. Grief is the normal and natural response to a loss of any kind. After a loss, a griever might feel numb and unable to concentrate as well as be confused.
I am available to guide grievers through the Grief Recovery Method at any time; you do not need to wait a determined amount of time to heal your broken heart. My phone number is 970-376-8248 if you have questions or are interested in the program.
Celynn McClarrinon, LSW