Welcome back to part 2 of Melanie Forbes Cook’s interview. Last week Melanie shared about losing her husband to a heart attack 14 months ago after almost 25 years of marriage and ministry and the painful events that led up to his death and how she handled it. If you missed it, I hope you’ll go back and listen. This week she dives into all that’s happened since his passing and how journaling has led her to soon publish four books to help others deal with grief. She also shares in this episode five tips for those who’ve lost a loved one and five tips for their support team. These are real and practical ways to get through the crushing weight of grief and also also how to really help others who are in the midst of grief. I know you’ll be so glad you listened.
Highlights From This Episode
“At about the nine month mark I decided that I had to get a glimpse that I have a future of some sort… so I hired a widow coach.” – Melanie describing how she dealt with the grief
“God’s word was like a lifeboat in the middle of an ocean and I ran to it” – Melanie
“Somebody said one time that your greatest point of ministry will come out of your deepest hurt.” – Melanie describing how her husband’s death has led her to find her ministry
“Sometimes you just need permission to dream again and to start to breath again… I don’t have to live like I died, too, that day.” – Melanie describing the guilt she had in learning to have joy in her life after her husband’s death
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And we know that all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose. – Romans 8:28
Check out Melanie’s upcoming books here.
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NAVIGATING THE NEW NORMAL
PRACTICAL TIPS FOR THE WIDOWED AND THOSE SUPPORTING THEM
Five Tips for Widows
1. It’s OK to ask for help and say you’re not OK. You don’t
have to wear the mask of holding it together when you
feel like you are falling apart!
2. Guilty feelings WILL come. The mind is the devils
workshop and he will try to play mind games that will
steal any joy you have! Be prepared with truth so he can’t
use guilt against you.
3. Good friends and family are worth their weight in gold!!!
They want to help. Turn to them!
4. Practice gratitude – even when you don’t feel like it –
ESPECIALLY when you don’t feel like it!
5. Make a list and try to accomplish at least one productive
thing each day. Knowing you have a list of tasks to work
on will give you a reason to get out of bed each day
-BONUS: Try to get sleep when you can! Sleep is one of the
things that is majorly disrupted after the loss of a spouse.
Try to get enough. You can handle life much better if you are
Five Tips for the Support Team
1. Don’t try to compare an event you went through to
widowhood. The loss of a spouse is a loss like no other. It’s
unique – the joining of two becoming one and half of that
has suddenly been ripped away.
2. Still include your widowed friend in normal activities.
3. It’s OK for you to talk about our spouse and fun memories. It
may bring tears but it helps us to know that our spouse is
remembered by more than just us… that they made a
difference in your life too!
4. Be OK with our tears and our laughter! Both will come!
5. Think of practical ways to help. If you need it done at your
house, we need it done at ours and we now have one less
person to do it. Volunteer to mow the yard, repair broken
things, prepare meals or freezer gift cards, help with