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Pain of loss too much? GriefShare can help

Grief is a universal emotion, one that will undoubtedly touch the lives of all at some point or another and perhaps the greatest grief a person can experience is the loss of someone they love.

When facing the aftermath of loss, many manage to navigate through the dark waters of despair to find their way to the shores of acceptance. Others, however, may find themselves struggling to stay afloat, to continue on with their lives as before. This is a fact with which GriefShare facilitators are all too familiar and as people who have gone through this pain personally, they are making it their mission to assist others in their journey from mourning to joy.

GriefShare is an international, nondenominational organization with chapters all across the globe. It involves a 13-week program with three different aspects, including a video featuring experts on grief, a group discussion in which participants are encouraged, but not required, to share their stories and a personal workbook that gives participants the ability to record their thoughts and track their progress toward healing.

In 2015, having benefited from GriefShare’s three-pronged approach himself, the late Pete Giordano founded the Pahrump chapter, with Central Valley Baptist Church offering to provide the meeting venue. His goal was simple, to help just one person to recover from their loss and move on with their lives. In the time he led the group, he was able to surpass that goal by leaps and bounds, with approximately 150 area residents regaining their happiness in life during the nearly five years Giordano was at the helm.

Although Giordano passed away in March of 2020, the GriefShare Chapter at Central Valley Baptist Church has lived on, with former participants stepping up to leadership roles in order to continue the program.

“There is no ‘right’ way to grieve,” information on the GriefShare website explains. “Feeling angry or full of regret? Are you depressed and wondering how to heal? Do you walk around in a mental fog? All this is normal. And while your grief journey is unique, you’ll find many grieving people are facing the same struggles. And others who’ve gone before you can help.

“Grief is a journey that shouldn’t be traveled alone,” the website continues. “You may feel like no one understands and be tempted to isolate, but as counselor David Bueno Martin says, ‘Healing happens in the context of finding others who can help you.’ A GriefShare group is a safe place to find support.”

In addition to offering its regular 13-week program, GriefShare also hosts sessions specific to those who have lost their life’s partner. Residents of the Pahrump area will be able to take advantage of this special seminar tomorrow, May 27 during “Loss of a Spouse” and anyone who has suffered this tragedy is encouraged to attend. Whether a regular GriefShare member or not, widows and widowers can find solace at this meeting, led and facilitated by people who have also had to adjust their entire lives after the passing of their husband or wife.

“Loss of a Spouse” will take place Saturday, May 27 from 1 to 3 p.m. at Central Valley Baptist Church, 3170 S. Blagg Road. To pre-register or for more information contact lead facilitator Marcia Savage at 775-513-4482.

The local GriefShare chapter is also preparing for the conclusion of its current 13-week cycle, which ends with the Celebration of Life. A chance for members to commemorate their own achievements in healing and honor their loved ones, the Celebration of Life brings past and present participants together for an afternoon of both laughter and tears.

The Celebration of Life is set for Saturday, June 3 from noon to 2 p.m. at Central Valley Baptist Church. There will be a potluck lunch and attendees will be able to decorate painted rocks to place in the Memorial Rock Garden in remembrance of those they have lost.

Following “Loss of a Spouse” and the Celebration of Life, GriefShare will begin its next 13-week cycle. Week one will take place on Monday, June 5 from 3 to 5 p.m. as well as Saturday, June 10 from 1 to 3 p.m. Meetings are always on Mondays and Saturdays, with each week’s seminar “self-contained”, meaning members can join the cycle at any time and simply catch up on what they missed during the next cycle.

Meetings are open to anyone who has lost a loved one, be it a parent, sibling, family member or friend.

For more information contact Savage at the above-mentioned number or visit www.GriefShare.org

Contact reporter Robin Hebrock at rhebrock@pvtimes.com

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