Articles

  • From Motherless to ‘Motherfull’

    September 25, 2016

    Knowing our role or function among our friends and family isn’t something we intentionally think about; it’s just natural. Knowing our role at work is necessary and obvious. I didn’t realize every character (aka: people around me) in my story (aka: life) had been playing a role in my life for years. Not just Mom, […]

  • Coping With Grief: Approaching the Second Anniversary of My Son’s Death

    September 17, 2016

    Life is moving along well, considering the magnitude of losing of my only child almost two years ago. Since December of last year, I have started to feel like myself again. My nature, which is generally optimistic and hopeful, has returned. Recognizing that part of myself return was like meeting with an old friend. Since […]

  • Time Doesn’t Heal; Gratitude Does

    September 11, 2016

    I remember after the death of our son in 2011, how disconnected I felt that first year. Things I once enjoyed, even special relationships, I was unable to maintain. It wasn’t that I had stopped caring, never that, but the energy involved in even writing a simple letter was too much for me. I was […]

  • Doubt: A Meaningful Part of Saint Mother Teresa’s Story

    September 11, 2016

    One of the most important revelations about Saint Mother Teresa (1910 – 1997) was made after her death.  It came in a collection of personal letters written to her spiritual advisers made public in a book published in 2007.  The book called, Mother Teresa: Come Be My Light, revealed that Mother Teresa was plagued by serious […]

  • No Longer the Victim: Emerging From Loss

    September 1, 2016

    When we have children, being a parent becomes one of the deepest parts of our identity. As a woman, my identity is being the mother of Becca, Christopher, Kimmy, Jamison, and Austin. When Becca went through times of severe illness (such as cancer at age 3, being given a 50/50 chance of surviving labor and […]

  • Grieving the Loss of the Future

    August 21, 2016

    I knew from day one when I lost my mom that specific occasions would arise in my life that I would inevitably miss having a mother there for. The two most prominent times would be getting married and having kids. I was hesitant about them from the beginning. It was comforting knowing I had my […]

  • Is ‘Getting Over It’ the Goal?

    August 19, 2016

    “Loss is about all kinds of things,” says Dr. Howard Winokuer, who spoke with Dr. Gloria Horsley at an Association for Death Education and Counseling (ADEC) conference. As the president of ADEC, he works with Dr. Gloria’s organization, the Open to Hope Foundation, very closely. Loss can include divorce, moving, growing older, and of course […]

  • The Challenge of Guilt During Grief

    August 19, 2016

    Before I made my professional home in the grief world, I had no idea that guilt was such a common emotion after someone died. Looking back, perhaps I should have known. My maternal grandmother died when I was ten years old. Unlike many grandparents I see today, my grandparents rarely got out and about and […]

  • Lunch Date with Resilience: Not Everything Happens ‘For a Reason’

    August 17, 2016

      “You can go two ways when you have a tragedy,” she began as she unrolled her white, pressed napkin. “You can be the victim, or you can change your story.” On July 6, 2016, I was honored to have lunch and conversation about loss, the lasting impact of fatal crashes, mindsets, and motherhood with […]

  • Cristina Flores: Finding Hope After Loss (En espanol)

    August 16, 2016

    Cristina Flores trabaja con Bo’s Place y es entrevistada por John Rampton de Open to Hope Foundation durante la conferencia de National Alliance for Grieving Children. Flores es la coordinadora de los grupos bilingües en Bo’s Place, un lugar de duelo que le ayuda a los niños, adultos y familiares que han sufrido una perdida […]

  • Lynne Ann DeSpelder: The Last Dance

    August 13, 2016

    The Director of the Open to Hope Foundation, Dr. Heidi Horsley, interviews author Lynne Anne DeSpelder. A counselor and psychology professor, DeSpelder wrote The Last Dance: Encountering Death and Dying after years of studying the bereavement field. The book is now in its eighth edition. “The Last Dance” came from the idea that the warrior […]

  • Finding Hope Among the Global Losses

    August 11, 2016

    We have navigated many public losses, from Paris to Orlando to Nice. Some people are very empathetic and feel these losses deeply. Even though they may not have personally known those who died or were injured, they feel the Oneness that we are all connected, that individual choices and experiences affect all of us. For […]

  • Revolutionary Act: Choosing Love When Death is All Around

    August 8, 2016

    The past few months, I’ve been struck dumb, collapsed by the weight of what Francis Weller calls the “sorrows of the world.” The best I could do most of the time was share stories other people were writing. I managed a brief comment on Good Grief, my radio show, after 49 people were killed at […]

  • Annette Childs: Journey from Loss to Healing

    August 1, 2016

    Psychologist Dr. Annette Childs, author of Will You Dance?, talks with the Association for Death Education and Counseling (ADEC), and shares tips for journeying from grief to healing. Grief and loss are short words that have the power to bring even the strongest people to their knees. Dr. Childs began to see grief as faceless […]

  • The Shocking Truth About Elisabeth-Kubler Ross’s 5 Stages of Grief

    July 27, 2016

    We are universally connected in our grief and suffering regarding the end of life. There’s no escaping the fact that 56.5 million people die each year — 2.5 million in the USA alone — that’s 6,500 individuals departing daily. Yet, as founders of The Grief Recovery Institute, John James and Russell Friedman note, “We are […]

  • Spider in the Candle Jar

    July 24, 2016

    I keep a yoga mat rolled out in a small room in my house. In front of it I have a candle in a jar, with a sticker on the bottom that identifies the fragrance as “inner peace.” I light it when I practice because the flame helps me focus, and I also figure that […]

  • Ode to an Urn Maker: Commemorative Urns of Eliza Thomas

    July 18, 2016

    Ceramic artist Eliza Thomas has a unique practice of creating commemorative urns and offering them to those grieving a loss. Hearing of this work, I was intrigued, and tried to track her down. When we finally meet at Caffe Borrone in Menlo Park, we are just a short walk from Stanford University. Next door neighbors […]

  • Homesick This Summer: Widows Miss Their Men

    July 17, 2016

      A few days ago, I boarded a flight to St. Louis to visit my son who had recently moved there for his job.  As I sat in my seat, a white-haired lady walked down the aisle of the plane, and she had a big smile on her face, like she was glad to see […]

  • Getting Through Those Triggers!

    July 15, 2016

    When we lose a loved one, the time we spend dealing with sadness surrounding that loss can vary daily, hourly or even minute-by-minute. As time goes by, the expectation we have and what generally occurs, is that the sad thoughts spread themselves out further and further apart. We learn to adjust to life moving on […]

  • After Father’s Death, Daughter Recalls His Deep Devotion

    July 9, 2016

    My father was an activist who devoted his life to one principle: that God is love. He once told me that he was a Christian because he was born in a Christian household in a Christian culture and it might have been otherwise if he’d been born in, say, the Middle East. His belief in […]

  • What Do We Really Believe About Death?

    July 1, 2016

    This is the second of four articles based on concepts, research and experiences shared in, LOVE NEVER DIES by Elizabeth Horwin WHAT IS DEATH? After studying the religions and cultures of this world for most of my life, what I have found is that an individual’s belief regarding death is deeply rooted in the belief […]

  • Go Ahead, Judge Me for My Tattoos: How Memorial Tattoos Help

    June 30, 2016

      “What an idiotic thing – to deface your own body,” an uncle said after I got my first tattoo. He wasn’t interested in the story behind it. Like many people, he’s one that goes through life without checking his assumptions and, as a result, often misses the opportunity to see beauty in unexpected places. […]

  • Lynne Ann DeSpelder: Death Rituals

    June 25, 2016

    Lynne Ann DeSpelder talks with Dr. Heidi Horsley about death rituals during the Association for Death Education and Counseling (ADEC) conference. DeSpelder is a counselor, professor of psychology, and co-author of the book The Last Dance: Encountering Death and Dying, which is now in its eighth edition. A leader in the industry, DeSpelder got into […]

  • Isabel Stenzel Byrnes: Facing Mortality

    June 21, 2016

    During the 2015 Association for Death Education and Counseling conference, Dr. Gloria Horsley connects with Isabel Stenzel Byrnes about finding hope and balance while living with an illness. Born with cystic fibrosis, Byrnes wasn’t given many years to live—but she has proven doctors wrong again and again. She attended CF-related camps as a child and […]

  • Shep Jeffreys: Helping Grieving People When Tears are Not Enough

    June 21, 2016

    Open to Hope Foundation’s Dr. Gloria Horsley interviews Shep Jeffreys for the Association for Death Education and Counseling (ADEC) organization. What happens when tears aren’t enough to help you grief? Jeffreys is an assistant professor of psychiatry at Johns Hopkins University. He’s also a psychologist and grief counselor with a private practice. He’s also the […]

  • Why Does it Hurt So Much?

    June 13, 2016

    Grieving people usually don’t ask directly: Why does it hurt so much? But I see that it hurts; I hurt like that. It hurts because you loved. You were connected to another human being heart to heart. It hurts. Death hurts a lot when we love like this. This hurt causes an incredible amount of […]

  • Valarie Molaison: Supporting Grieving Families for the Long Haul

    June 12, 2016

    Right after someone passes is often the most difficult period. Dr. Heidi Horsley interviews Dr. Valarie Molaison about how to handle this time, and what you can do to help support grieving families. Dr. Molaison is the clinical director at Supporting Kids in Delaware. Dr. Horsley points out that society gives people a lot of […]

  • Father’s Day After Your Father Has Died

    June 11, 2016

    It’s Father’s Day, and for more than 100 million Americans whose fathers have died, it will be a day of missing Dad. What can these fatherless Americans do to make the holiday meaningful? For my book, FatherLoss, I interviewed several hundred people about the death of their dads. And some were actually a little relieved […]

  • ‘Were You Two Close?’ Reflections on the Death of my Virtual Father

    June 7, 2016

    When I was in my mid-20s, my mother married a charismatic photographer named Tom. He was the owner of a photography studio and son of a LIFE magazine photographer, and he and I connected on the subject of art and entrepreneurship. I was an art history major, and had just started my own business as […]

  • Disenfranchised Grief

    May 30, 2016

    Disenfranchised grief is a type of grief that a majority of people stigmatize and/or don’t feel comfortable talking about. This can include suicide, pet loss, death from an overdose, and other losses that aren’t considered mainstream. Dr. Gloria Horsley interviewed Dr. Ken Doka at the Association for Death Education and Counseling (ADEC) conference to talk […]

  • You’ve Got a Friend: Spending Time with Fellow Grievers

    May 25, 2016

    As a psychologist, I have learned how important the human need to belong and feel appreciated is to mental health. But what happens when we lose an important relationship, especially during childhood? How does the death of a close loved one affect a little one, when personality and self-esteem are still in the formative stages? […]

  • Therese Wenner: Cranial Sacral

    May 24, 2016

    If you haven’t heard of cranial sacral work before, you’re not alone. Dr. Gloria Horsley interviews Therese Wenner at the National Alliance for Grieving Children conference, and discusses the benefits of this form of therapy. Based in Olympia, Washington, Wenner has a private practice that focuses on cranial sacral therapy. For those in grief, this […]

  • Love, Separation, and the ‘Dance Full of Mystery’

    May 23, 2016

    The author of How We Grieve: Relearning the World, Dr. Tom Attig, talks about love and separation with the Open to Hope Foundation. As a philosopher, Dr. Attig takes a unique approach to teaching and talking about grief. Loving someone is a dance full of mystery, he explains. With every dance partner, you can feel […]

  • Years of Love: Measuring a Life After a Loss

    May 22, 2016

    Years astound me. Forever etched in my mind a calculation of time, reminders, anniversaries, dates, and birthdays. I still find it hard to believe August 1, 2015, marked the 25th anniversary we lost my beloved sister Margie. To celebrate my 25th birthday in October 1981 marked the last time I saw my beloved sister Jane […]

  • Jamie Yetter: Families and Organ Donation

    May 20, 2016

    The family services coordinator with the Arkansas Regional Organ Recovery Agency (ARORA), Jamie Yetter, sat down with Dr. Gloria Horsley to discuss organ donation. Families and organ donation is a tricky subject. As a chaplain, Yetter gets referrals from hospitals about someone who potentially is an organ donor. Yetter goes on-site to see if the […]

  • Managing A Death Anniversary

    May 19, 2016

    After losing my husband to brain cancer last year, I was often warned about the one-year anniversary of losing a loved one. The Death Anniversary. I was no stranger to this feeling; I had lost my father when I was a kid and my mother passed away the year before last… except this time was […]

  • Mother’s Day Memories

    May 17, 2016

    Let me just start by saying it was a wonderful Mother’s Day surprise to see that the Open to Hope Foundation wanted me to write articles for them!  It made getting up at 4am today to catch my 5am bus all worth it. My Mother’s Day was not one of the best, and therefore I […]

  • Spring—A Haunted Season

    May 11, 2016

    We are all haunted by the dead, and that reality, like so many others, is both challenge and comfort. Autumn with its Halloween, falling leaves, frosty air and increasingly bare branches is usually thought of as the season of haunting, but we grieving people know that spring has ghosts of its own. Mother’s Day, Father’s […]

  • A Letter to My Living Children for Mother’s Day

    May 3, 2016

    Dearest ones, Mother’s Day is quickly approaching. Each year, I’ve received beautiful hand drawn cards or beautiful crafts from you that I cherish and save. Your words of love and appreciation are an echo of the profound love and appreciation I feel for each of you. Not just on Mother’s Day, but every day. And […]

  • By Adversity Our Hearts Are Made Better: How Loss May Strengthen Us

    April 29, 2016

    It was so ironic that as I was flying home on a wonderful United Airlines flight at some 300 mph from the ADEC (Association of Death Education and Counseling) conference, I was reading David McCullough’s book, The Wright Brothers.  It is ironic because the conference had a lot to do about sharing the best of […]

  • Seasons of Remembering: Spring Brings Needed Change

    April 28, 2016

    It is amazing how tangible things can evoke some memory tucked away in the secret chambers of our thoughts. Like the changing of the seasons, like Spring. Trees that just yesterday were leafless and barren, now burst with leaf and  bud. And within the intricate xylem tissue, water and minerals are transported from the roots […]

Open to Hope Radio

Open to Hope TV

  • Episode 79: Spouse Loss, What About Dating?

    July 1, 2016

    On this show Dr’s Gloria and Heidi Horsley interview three bereaved spouses; Dr. Joanne Moore, physical therapist and author of After the Loss of a Spouse: What’s Next?, comedian Carol Scibelli author of Poor Widow Me and her partner Mickey Bayard.  They discuss among other issues coping with spouse loss and dating.  The show will […]

  • Episode 74: Grief Diaries

    May 10, 2016

    On this show Dr’s Gloria and Heidi Horsley interview Lynda Cheldelin Fell, Linda Bateman Gomez , Carol Scibelli and Christine Duminiak. These four women have found hope after loss and have contributed to the Grief Diaries brand of books created by Lynda Fell. Lynda is also the executive president of the newly formed National Grief […]

  • Episode 68: Grief Quest/ Music and Healing

    April 26, 2016

    On this show Dr. Gloria Horsley and Dr. Heidi Horsley discuss with Lilly Juliian bereaved parent/spouse and founder of COPE and her partner Jerry Winestock bereaved spouse about their book Grief Quest and their retreats and camps that have inspired thousands of individuals and families to find hope and healing. Jerry is also the author […]

  • Episode 67: Finding Hope After A Terrorist Attack

    April 26, 2016

    Joining Dr’s. Gloria and Heidi Horsley on this show are Melissa Pettignano, singer and songwriter and her mother Evelyn whose aunt/sister Arlene was killed in the World Trade Center and Mary Fetchet who Co-founded Voices of September 11th in 2001 following the death of her son Brad on 9/11. A clinical social worker, Mary created […]