As you enter the last month of the year, you have already survived one major holiday of the season. I hope that as you focused on the true meaning of Thanksgiving, you were able to give thanks for something good in your life. But don’t stop now; for the Christmas holiday is upon us! Just as I encouraged you to look at the true meaning of Thanksgiving, I urge you to do something similar at Christmas. The author of this poem states her feelings beautifully!
It can’t possibly be Christmas without her being here.
Yet the world is singing round me, joyful tidings and good cheer.
Though I try to put on armor and brave the sights and sounds,
a few moments worth of shopping, and the tears are spilling down.
I pray for strength to do it, find a path through holidays,
look for shortcuts, good ideas, and some directions through the maze.
Then I find at last the answer: I’ll include her symbolically.
And the giving becomes perfect; her love’s flowing down, through me.
Genesse Bourdeau Gentry
Sometimes it only takes a new perspective to help us get through the toughest times. I pray you will allow your loved one to shine through you in some way this holiday season. We will be meeting together to remember our loved ones together at the Holiday Memorial Service on December 7. We will light a candle in their honor/memory , sing a chorus or two and share a good story with those around us.
December 7… Memorial Service 5:00 pm at the hospice office (OUTSIDE…dress warm)
December 9… Lunch Bunch at Lees at noon
December 14… Lunch Bunch at the Barnesville Museum at noon
December 23… Breakfast at Patty’s at 9:00 am
I am available by phone or appointment. For more information on above events, call 740-432-7440. Wishing you a blessed Christmas and a Happier New Year!
Terri Wootton MSW, LISW, ACHP-SW
Happy Thanksgiving…A time to be thankful. I never realized how many holidays had the words “happy” or “merry” attached to the day or the season prior to taking my current job as bereavement counselor. I soon became aware that these words frequently have a hollow ring for many during the holidays. But as we begin this stretch of the holidays, I encourage you to focus on the true meaning of Thanksgiving, for there are many things for which we can be thankful. Memories are precious. Share some of those with a friend this holiday season. It may mean that you have to make the choice to be thankful. But I believe as you do, you will feel it in your spirit.
If you are struggling this season, we at hospice will be glad to help in any way we can. We are offering a holiday memorial service on Tuesday, December 7 @ 5:00pm outside at the Hospice Office. We are located at 9711 E. Pike Rd. in Cambridge. It is open to the public. Feel free to bring someone with you to honor your loved ones. I invite you to come and share the evening with the hospice staff. It will be a short service, including a candle lighting. A time of refreshments will follow. Dress warm. Hope to see you there.
Many other activities are lined up for the upcoming month as well. Hope to see you soon.
November 9–Lunch group @ noon @ Belmont County Museum in Barnesville.(Bring your own lunch and we’ll eat together)
November 11– “Lunch Bunch” 12:00 @ Mr. Lee’s. An informal time to eat and share with others who have experienced a loss. Call for information.
November 18- Breakfast at Patty’s Place @9:00 a.m. (Note the date change due to holiday
Feel free to contact me with any questions at 432-7440.
Terri Wootton MSW, LISW, ACHP-SW
Fall is now upon us! Fall forces us to reevaluate some things. Our wardrobe is one of them. It is time to pull out the heavier insulation! We need extra protection from the elements and surrounding environment. This may also be true for you at this point in your grief journey. Extra or additional precautions must be taken for you to get through this season of life. It is important for you to take care of your emotional needs as well as your
physical needs. This is a time in your life when it is vital for you to express your feelings, ask and accept help, and be kind to yourself. You also need to get plenty of rest, eat healthy, and be alert for physical problems. You may also begin to set short term and long term goals. You may want to try a new activity, such as joining a club or organization, take a new course, do some volunteer work, or evaluate your career goals. Whatever the case may be, find a purpose for the season in which you are now living. We at hospice will be glad to help in any way we can. Many activities are lined up for the upcoming month. It would be great to see you at some of them. Check your calendar and plan ahead.
October 7- A new Grief Share support group starts. 13 weeks. Call for details.
October 12– Lunch Bunch at Barnesville Museum (Belmont County Victorian Museum). Bring your own lunch and join us at NOON.
October 14 – Lunch Bunch at noon at Mr. Lee’s. (Thursday)
October 28-Breakfast group at 9:00 am @ Patty’s Place in Belle Valley.
Contact me with any questions at 740-432-7440.
Terri Wootton MSW, LISW, ACHP-SW
It’s really hard to believe that we are heading into fall. The days are getting shorter, and the evenings are cooler. Change is in the air. For many of you, change took place days, weeks or months ago. Life changes forever when you lose a loved one. It’s as if you are forced to join a club in which you want NO part! Just as we have no control over the calendar and the seasons, we also had no control over the death of our loved ones. The only thing we do have control over is our attitude and how we are going to live with the hand we have been dealt. I can only say to you that things will get easier. In the meanwhile it is important to surround yourself with positive people, let the tears flow as needed, and remember to live your life as to honor your loved one. Seasons come and go, but memories will live on forever.
I am really grateful that I have the opportunity to speak words into your life each month. I only hope that some of them bring you hope. Many of you I have never met, but I want you to know that you are precious to us here at Hospice, and we are here to help in any way that we can. Along with one on one time, we offer many group activities. I hope you will take advantage of any that sound interesting or helpful. If you have any questions about anything, feel free to call me at 740-432-7440.
September 9- “Lunch Bunch” at Mr. Lee’s in Cambridge at noon.
September 14- “Lunch Bunch” at Belmont County Museum at noon.
September 14- Bereavement /Art Workshop with Lois Merrill @ 5:30 at the Hospice office. ( Memory box collage) Bring 5-6 photos of your loved one to use for the project.
September 23- Breakfast Support Group at 9:00 a.m. @ Patty’s Place in Belle Valley
May a smile touch your soul today!
Terri Wootton MSW, LISW, ACHP-SW
The summer is quickly slipping away. Summer will soon turn into fall. And whether it has been a week, a month, or a year since the loss of your loved one, you will soon realize that life still goes on. As much as we feel that the whole world should stop when our loved one dies, (for ours certainly did) the seasons continue to come and go. And we are forced to adjust.
All the feelings that overwhelm you when a loved one dies deserve your attention. They are important openings to greater awareness: about the relationship you shared, your own needs, the meaning of life. And they take time!!! They are also the steps to your recovery, for there is no way out but through. Only by letting yourself experience grief can you move beyond it. Beyond—not to your old way of being or what once was “normal”, but beyond to fully integrating loss into your life, to richer understanding, renewed purpose, and deeper spirituality.
Grieving is painful and demanding. But healing does come. The deep pain will subside and you will find yourself able to reflect on your loved one, how your life was and how it is now, and begin to think about how your life will be in the future. Personally, I have lost some very good friends. The void still exists when I can no longer share the excitement and pictures of my grandkids or just pick up the phone and talk about my day! A BIG sigh …but I can testify that the pain has lessened in intensity. It no longer consumes me, but I will never forget them. They, in many ways, helped shape me into how I respond today. They will always be present in my life.
You don’t have to go through this time alone. As part of our Hospice family, please take advantage of the services we offer. I am also available by phone or appointment.
August activities at Hospice:
Aug. 10: Lunch group to meet @ Barnesville Museum @ noon. Bring your lunch
Aug. 12: “Lunch Bunch” at Mr. Lee’s at 12:00. Lunch on your own. It is a time of food and fellowship with others who have suffered a loss. For information, call 740-432-7440.
Aug. 26: Breakfast Support Group @ Patty’s Place in Caldwell @ 9:00 am
Hope to see you or talk with you soon!
Terri Wootton MSW, LISW, ACHP-SW
The month begins with a BANG-a strong reminder of freedom. For many, the July 4th celebration means a picnic and fireworks. Sometimes the real meaning of the holiday is lost. Freedom can mean different things to different people. For some, it does have the meaning of being able to live as we do in this country. For others, it may take on a new connotation. At this time in your life you may view your loved one as having been set free at last from their suffering. The hardships and illness that led to this time in your life are past, and now you must find a way to go on. Freeing yourself from living in the past is sometimes very difficult.
Establishing a new norm for your life is essential and often requires energy you may not feel you possess. Others may be needed to help you along the way to healing. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. We are also here to help in any way that we can. We offer various programs that I hope you will consider.
July’s upcoming events include:
July 8 Lunch Bunch 12:00 at Mr. Lee’s in Cambridge
July 13 Lunch Group 12:00 at Belmont County Museum-bring a sack lunch
July 22 Grief Support Breakfast 9:00 am at Patty’s Place in Belle Valley
July 24 Flamingo MEMORIAL Run: Sometimes doing something tangible is a special way to honor your loved one…You can do that with us in a one mile walk or a 5k. All monies will benefit patient care and bereavement services. (Check out our Facebook or Web page.)
Remember that I am also available for one on one time. I hope this season in life has you choosing to focus on the positives.
Terri Wootton MSW, LISW, ACHP-SW
I just now looked ahead at the weather forecast for the week. It promises to be warm and sunny on the outside, but I know that all of you are not feeling its warmth on the inside. Because it may be stormy in your present circumstances, you may have to dig deep to find some hope of sunshine. But without hope, our spirit withers and dies! I am here to remind you that there is also hope in the stormy season of grief. The following sums it up for us:
The Hidden Power of the Heart
When the heart is enlivened again, it feels like the sun coming out after a week of rainy days. There is hope in the heart that chases the clouds away. Hope is a brighter heart frequency and as you begin to reconnect with your heart, hope is waiting to show you new possibilities and arrest the downward spiral of grief and loneliness. It becomes a matter of how soon you want the sun to shine. Listening to the still, small voice in your heart will make hope into a reality. ~Sara Paddison
I particularly like the line that says: ” It becomes a matter of how soon you want the sun to shine.” We do have control over much of it. I pray that you will listen to the small voice in your heart as you move towards healing. And remember, we are here to help.
June 8: Support Group @ Belmont County Museum in Barnesville at Noon. Pack a lunch.
June 10: “Lunch Bunch” @ Mr. Lee’s at Noon. COme share lunch with others who have suffered a loss, and make a new friend.
June 24: Breakfast Support Group @ Patty’s Place in Caldwell at 9AM.
June 28-30: Kids Kamp @ Deerassic Park from 10-2 each day. Kids ages 6-12 eligible. Call Terri for details at 740-432-7440.
I pray God’s blessings on you as you continue to ” reconnect with your heart”.
Terri Wootton LISW, ACHP-SW
Just as we have always heard that April showers bring May flowers, it is also true that we grow as we walk along the path of grief. Buried inside each of us is the potential to blossom into something beautiful after we have come through the rain. As I write this, I am taking time to look back over the last few years and reflect on the losses I have experienced. You see… I have lost my Dad and my dearest friend since working here at Hospice, BUT I have learned that I must leave the rains and storms of yesterday behind me and move into a new season where there can once again be flowers in bloom. My life must go on, and I have concluded that my loved ones would want that for me. It is my desire for you to learn the meaning of this as well.
May brings with it Memorial Day and a time of honoring those we love. For the average person, Memorial Day means a three-day weekend and a time for rest and relaxation. But you probably do not feel like the average person at this time in your life, so I encourage you to do something that will honor the one you love in a different way than might be the norm. You may choose to plant a tree or shrub in your garden… one that will remind you of the one who is no longer with you. In time, it will be a comfort and a joy to behold. It is a living, breathing thing-something with life… just like you will remember your loved one as it ushers in precious memories of your times together. Plant it and water it with love! Enjoy it for years to come!
May 11: Barnesville Lunch Bunch @ 12 Noon at Belmont County Museum. Bring a sack lunch
May 13: Lunch Bunch Support Group @ 12 Noon at Mr. Lee’s
May 27: Support Breakfast @ 9 AM at Patty’s Place in Caldwell
I hope to see you soon. And as always, I’m available by phone at 740-432-7440.
Terri Wootton MSW, LISW, ACHP-SW Bereavement Coordinator
April showers bring May flowers…March excites me for it brings with it the promise of spring. Then comes the rainy season! April, for me, is the tunnel through which I must pass to reach the other side of winter. it may be dreary and cold, and at times a little tiresome; but it is necessary to get me to the warmth and joy that summer offers. So, here I go. Follow me if you will.
As you move into the summer of your grief journey, you will have left behind cold and rainy days. You will experience hard times before experiencing the joy and sunshine of tomorrow, and those times will change the person you are. They will mold you into the person you are to become. I pray that as you begin that journey and continue to walk along the pathway, you will have a hope of better tomorrows and sunshiny days. Allow someone else to walk beside you and be your friend. Let them hold your hand or cry with you. Allow someone else to be your strength if needed. Allow yourself to change. Also, remember we are here if you need us in the months to come. We have been on hold with meetings on a monthly basis, but we are starting back this month. There are always events offered to lend support. Feel free to take advantage of them. We want to help you on your journey towards healing.
Upcoming events: WE ARE STARTING UP GROUPS AGAIN!!! I can’t wait to SEE you!
April 8: Lunch Bunch at Mr. Lee’s in Cambridge at Noon…(Note the change to a THURSDAY)
April 13: Support Group meeting at Belmont County Museum in Barnesville at Noon…(bring your own lunch and we can eat together)
April 22: Breakfast Group at Patty’s Place in Belle Valley at 9 AM
A new Griefshare group will be starting on April 15 from 6-8 PM at Byesville Assembly of God Church in Byesville. It will meet for 13 weeks. If interested, contact me at the Hospice office.
As always, if you have any questions or if you need to talk, I am available at 740-432-7440.
With Warm thoughts…
Terri Wootton, MSW, LISW, ACHP-SW
Spring! The calendar says 3 weeks, but these past few weeks have been a bit deceiving… SNOW, SNOW, and more SNOW! The week ahead looks promising though for sunshine and rain! Hopefully, March will bring an early spring and more of the sunshine I so love. The days are becoming longer and I would love to begin to think of outside chores and activities. I always begin thinking about decorating the outdoor patio at this point in time (at least in my mind). One of my favorite spots is the old porch swing. I love to sit on it and watch the world go by. It gives me great peace, and occasionally I’ll grab a nap after a busy day at work. It is my get-a-way for a few needed moments.
As March brings springtime, I hope it also brings you sunshine and hope in the new season. It is only natural to have dreary days mixed in with sunshine, so don’t be discouraged when they creep in. Just try to stay focused. Plan an activity that will bring you joy, and act upon it. Have lunch with a friend, feed the ducks, or take a walk. But whatever you do, loof for that moment or activity that gives you a few minutes of peace, and bask in its warmth. It may be what gets you through the next season.
But no matter where you find yourself as you read this, remember that we at Hospice are here to lend you support along the way. Our upcoming events for the month of March are still postponed because of COVID. I hope I will be able to tell you this will change soon… STAY TUNED…
March 9 Lunch Bunch at Belmont County Museum Barnesville CANCELLED
March 10 “Lunch Bunch” at Mr. Lee’s at noon. CANCELLED
March 25 Breakfast support group at Patty’s Place in Belle Valley CANCELLED
If you have questions about any of the events, or you just need someone to talk to, call me at 740-432-7440. I CAN meet with you one on one. May spring shine upon you!
Terri Wootton MSW, LISW, AHPC-SW