Thursday, July 28, 2005

Online Grief Group and Memorials

I recently read an interview with author John Irving where he said that all of his books feature death in some way, a phenomena he attributed to the ecstasy of becoming a parent and the fear of losing that beloved child. When I read that passage, something inside me clicked. I’ve been a parent for 18 years now and looking back, I can see the same phenomena in my writing. “Death is a Bitch,” a submission to an online writing group short story competition, was an attempt to connect to my father in his loss two years ago of my mother. Unfortunately, I buried the heart of the story between a glib opening and closing.

The theme for that short story competition was to create a story around people from an internet group meeting for the first time at a conference. I chose a grief support group as the setting for “Death is a Bitch,” knowing there must certainly be an online support group for mourning, but not having participated in one. Today, while researching topics for another project, lo and behold, I discovered GriefNet. GriefNet offers space for people to write memorials for their loved ones at GriefNet Memorials. Many of these memorials are therapeutic expressions of people’s anguish in loss, but several of them provide insightful glimpses into human mortality. While I can’t say it’s inspiring, it sure does give you a peek behind the curtain of death.

Care to comment about dying, death, or grief? Click COMMENTS below and share your thoughts.


Dee said...

can't share in the death debate. that subject is hard for me, since I almost died a few years ago. Great entry and discussion.

Thanks for hopping by my blog. Email me at vidae at writing dot com to discuss links.


Ovation Leader said...

Thanks, Dee. I'll be in touch.

Anonymous said...

Death comes when you least expect it or at least hoped so hard for life. losing my late husband at 29 yrs old w/ our baby at 4 mo. was definitely the hardest thing I'd been through, but God gave me strength daily to continue living and find JOY again. It took years, but I can with smiles remember him and share with my daughter, especially this wkend as it would be his bday.


Ovation Leader said...

Kelly--Wise words. You are an inspiration to many people and a terrific mother to that dear girl who is now a teenager. Sending you hugs across the miles.