Deb Kosmer, a bereaved parent, author, poet, health care professional, and blogger, entered a post on Facebook about the practice of writing through grief. She said letters make words, words make sentences, sentences make pages, pages make chapters, and chapters make books.

I think one more line is needed: “Words create a new life.”

Experience made me add this line. Four family members died in 2007, including my daughter, the mother of my twin grandchildren. Each loss was painful, but my daughter’s death was the most painful. I didn’t think I would survive.

Turning to Writing

Because I’m a writer, I turned to my occupation for solace. A week after my daughter died, I sat down at the computer, and poured out my soul in words. While I was writing articles, I searched for ways to help myself. I looked for memorable quotes, words that would sustain me.

This search led to a book of quotations for women. But I didn’t stop there. I started writing affirmations in my mind. Indeed, they flooded my mind. So many affirmations came into my consciousness I created a book of them.

‘You Will Survive’

This leads me back to Deb Kosmer’s Facebook post. Today, I am able to see the grief healing steps I took. Many of the steps were unconscious, my mind’s way of saying “You will survive.” I am so glad I expressed my grief with words.

My heartfelt words, and the resources I used, led to a new life. Writing about your grief can do the same for you. If you are feeling lost, I ask you to write. Put your ideas and feelings into words. Keep doing it. As time passes, your words will reveal feelings, problems, and possible solutions to these problems.

In time, your heartfelt words will lead you out of the darkness into the light.

Harriet Hodson’s latest book, GRIEF DOODLING, is available at Grief Doodling: Bringing Back Your Smiles (9781608082520): Hodgson, Harriet: Books

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Harriet Hodgson

Harriet Hodgson has been a freelancer for 43 years, is the author of thousands of articles, and 42 books, including 10 grief resources. She is Assistant Editor of the Open to Hope website, a member of the Association of Health Care Journalists, Alliance of Independent Authors, Minnesota Coalition for Grief Education and Support, and Grief Coalition of Southeastern Minnesota. She is well acquainted with grief. In 2007 four family members died—her daughter (mother of her twin grandchildren), father-in-law, brother (and only sibling) and the twins’ father. Multiple losses shifted the focus of Hodgson’s work from general health to grief resolution and healing. She has appeared on more than 185 radio talk shows, including CBS Radio, and dozens of television stations, including CNN. In addition to writing for Open to Hope, Hodgson is a contributing writer for The Grief Toolbox website and The Caregiver Space website. A popular speaker, she has given presentations at The Compassionate Friends national conference, Bereaved Parents of the USA national conference, and Zoom grief conferences. Her work is cited in Who’s Who of American Women, World Who’s Who of Women, Contemporary Authors, and other directories. For more information about this busy grandmother, great grandmother, author, and speaker please visit

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