Tips for living: 'Borrowed Angel' offers personal experiences of coping with grief

By Wendy Jessen

For the Deseret News

Published: Thursday, June 5 2014 5:00 a.m. MDT

Updated: Wednesday, June 4 2014 3:52 p.m. MDT

Losing a child is likely one of the most difficult challenges that can happen to a family.

Erica Kiefer, a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, shares her story of grief, strength and coping strategies after the death of her infant son in "Borrowed Angel: Coping with the Loss of a Child" (Currawong Press, $12.99).

Some ways she found comfort and healing may be helpful for others who go through the same or similar trials.

Seek refuge in the temple. Kiefer said that she and her husband sought peace while attending the temple. While there, she was able to find solace in answers and understanding she gained while taking time to study and meditate.

Recognize the Lord's comfort. There are many ways the Lord will lift, support and sustain those who are suffering throughout their trials. By trusting him and seeking his help, the miracles can become evident.

Battling guilt. "I believe the adversary often uses guilt to destroy our peace and our testimonies," Kiefer writes. Listening to negative thoughts of failure, not-good-enough or not-deserving-of-good can lead people down a path of guilt. Squelch these feelings by having faith and hope in God's plan, Kiefer offers.

Seek recreation and other activities. Healing sometimes takes place by not dwelling on the hard circumstances of life but instead doing fun, healthy activities with others. Kiefer writes, "there is something about immersing yourself in a favorite activity that causes you to temporarily forget your problems — to take a healthy break by focusing on positive experiences."

There is healing in the company of others, the outdoors and doing other positive activities.

To get through losing a child, there is help. Relying on others, the Lord and sometimes therapy to heal and find peace can ease the painful burden, Kiefer writes.

"Borrowed Angel" shares relatable personal experiences that can help grieving parents begin to heal.

Wendy Jessen is a Southern Utah University graduate and a stay-at-home mother of six. Her email is wendyjessen26@gmail.com and she blogs at mormonmomofsix.blogspot.com.

Get The Deseret News Everywhere

Subscribe

Mobile

RSS