About the Book
“After the death of her husband, Laurel embraced the deep grief that followed and, in doing so, emerged with a strong and powerful voice that shows us the path towards growth and healing. Her artwork and poetry are an incredible testimony to the transformation that can take place when our hearts are open. My life has been enriched by the authentic message in Laurel’s work. Yours will be too!” Jane Ogden “Reading Laurel’s poetry is like having a magical, mystical encounter with your heart. It’s a transcendental experience and a beautiful celebration of the human spirit.” Linda Commito
Emerging Voices is a book of poetry and artwork which I created in 2010 to describe the feelings of grief and loss I experienced after the death of my husband of 42 years. The bereavement community, friends and family encouraged me to share what I had written because my poems reached out and touched others in a profound way, regardless of the type of loss the reader had experienced.
-a divorce or a relationship breakup
-the loss of a friendship
-the loss of a pet
-the loss of health or one’s physicality
-the loss of a job and financial stability
-the loss of safety after a trauma
-the loss of a cherished dream.
Sometimes it feels as if the pain and sorrow from loss will never let up. These emotions are very raw and really hurt, but accepting them as part of the grieving process and allowing yourself to feel what you feel is necessary for healing. Grief and mourning is a poignant process – each one of us experiences that journey in our own way.
The healing process is just that, a process, and there is no magic “time” for an individual’s grieving to end. While leaving a permanent wound on your heart and soul, in time grief softens its hold. This tender wound can be reopened without warning by an unexpected nuance or life event, and sorrow takes hold once again. The difference is that these unexpected moments don’t last as long as they did in the beginning and healing continues.
“Instead of a series of stages, we might think of the grieving process as a roller coaster, full of ups and downs, highs and lows. Like many roller coasters, the ride tends to be rougher in the beginning, the lows may be deeper and longer. The difficult periods should become less intense and shorter as time goes by, but it takes time to work through a loss. Even years after a loss, especially at special events such as a family wedding or the birth of a child, we may still experience a strong sense of grief.” Source: Hospice Foundation of America
My book, Emerging Voices, is intended to be a heart-felt gift to the reader as he or she travels down the painful and winding road of loss. There are blank journal pages within which provide a place for each individual to record his or her own thoughts and unique feelings. Writing helped me heal during that traumatic time and my wish is that my words within the book offer a place of solace for others. Whatever your grief experience, it is important to be patient with yourself and to allow the process to unfold as it will – the rule is that there are no rules for grieving.
Like a puzzle, grief comes in all shapes and forms ~ as does the journey of getting to a place of peace and comfort within us. Yes, my husband’s death has forever altered my life, and I am grateful to have been given the gift of a transformed spirit. Laurel