The grief that accompanies the loss of a loved one is crippling. In Feeling Left Behind, author Kim Murdock relates and empathizes with that pain because she’s been there. She knows what it feels like to be woefully blindsided by music or at the grocery store, to reconsider the future alone, and to connect with a person who is no longer alive. You will relate to her chapters as she describes:
● The crushing desire to freeze time and isolate yourself
● The unstable phase of “firsts”― first holidays, birthdays, anniversaries
● The anger and sadness at seeing other couples
● The loss of self, empathy, security, and tolerance
● The heartbreaking sadness of getting rid of their belongings
● And so much more
This is not a step-by-step guide on how to grieve. Kim outlines every detail of her experience as well as the experiences of her widow/widower friends to show you that you are not alone. You are normal. And you deserve as much time as possible to figure out how to survive in your own way.
Kim Murdock is a writer and editor who has made it her mission to help those dealing with the loss of a loved one, particularly a spouse. After becoming a widow at 42, she didn't want people to tell her how to heal or that everything happens for a reason. She just wanted to know that her feelings were normal. She spent almost three years working with a grief counselor and joined a young widows group, becoming good friends with many widows/widowers. Having these outlets to share her feelings and know she wasn't alone was really the only thing that helped her.
In gratitude to the widows and widowers who helped her, she decided to pay it forward and support others suffering a loss. In her award-winning book, Feeling Left Behind, she shares her experiences and feelings to help others know they aren't alone and that their feelings are normal. In a candid and heartfelt way, she expresses what many–maybe even most–grieving people feel and experience.
Spring fever . . . I’m definitely susceptible to this affliction. I remember the struggle of focusing in school when spring finally arrived. As an adult, I’m no better. I’d rather be outside basking in the sun or hiking than sitting inside toiling away on my computer. Ironically, however, I can be more productive in the spring. I have a strange mental alarm that tells me I should stop working when the sun sets. You’d think I have agrarian roots the way I shut down when it gets dark. Working when it’s dark torments me. Because it stays lighter in the spring, my workday is longer, and I can be more productive. Also, I’m lucky because I work from home and can take my work outside. This allows me to stay productive while satisfying my need to be outside. This spring has been cold in Denver, so spring fever has stayed dormant. The temperatures for the past couple of weeks have struggled to climb above the low 30s with occasional dumps of snow; therefore, I’ve welcomed work. The upcoming week again looks cooler and wetter, so I’ll welcome work again. We’ll see what happens when the temperatures rise again. You may find me leaving my computer behind and hitting the hiking trails, gardening, or devouring a book in my backyard.
Feeling Left Behind: Permission to Grieve
Spring and summer seem particularly dangerous for noticing couples. I live three blocks from a park and in the spring and summer, I often see couples there. They walk and hold hands, ride their bikes together, or sit on a park bench enjoying time together. Thankfully, there are many dogs in the park, which makes me happy. So I try to focus on the dogs and ignore the couples. But they are everywhere! It hurts my heart to see all of them. Reg and I used to take daily walks in the park. We had sat on the park benches just chatting and observing the scenery. Now, I have to witness other couples doing that.