Tag Archives: Emotion Focused Therapy

A Pastor’s Wife’s Response to Loss

Let me invite you into a discussions my husband and I have had over the years in response to the loss of our baby boy. First I encourage you to read the post he made on his blog http://looktothenorth.wordpress.com/ about Emotion Focused Therapy here and then you can see the response I added to his comments, or return here as it follows. It is a little glimpse into how we can see things a bit differently and still have a solid relationship, solid faith, and ultimately survive such a horrible loss.

My response:

As said marriage and family therapist wife, I must say that I love this piece! I love that my pastor husband would attend this Emotion Focused Therapy (EFT) conference with me – something he’s been hearing me preach about for over a decade since I was first exposed to the theory at Fuller Theological Seminary. That made me feel loved!

One thing I see a bit differently though, the part that says “… that gave us the courage and strength to not have to question God either.” We’d both say our faith was strengthened in that time in different ways. He because he didn’t need to question, me because I had to.

I was in a bible study in the year that followed our loss where the question was asked “Do you think you have grown in your faith and understanding of God over time?” My answer was yes and no. After facing significant loss, my faith in God was more solid than ever. He cared for us in minute and miraculous ways that could never have been humanly construed. Jesus was more real to me than ever. At the same time, I felt I understood Him much less. With most of an M.Div degree earned, I had spent a majority of my adult years in ministry as Young Life staff person and Chaplain at Fuller and SPU and thought I had a lot of pretty solid answers. I suddenly felt like I had no answers. The nuances of my belief system were turned upside down in that time, though my faith was solidified beyond measure.

I did, and still do question God. I feel safe bringing those questions to Him and even disagreeing with my understanding of Him at times, knowing our love is secure. Just as in a solid attachment relationship, as EFT supports and prescribes, I have so much faith in my relationship with God and His love for me, that I know He can “see” and “know” all of me and still call me his beloved. One things that stood out clearly was that I did not have to “be” anything in particular for God when I had nothing to give, or “do” anything to earn His love when it was all I could to to wake up and breath each day. I could be an imperfect shattered human being of infinite worth. That was the most profound lesson of loss that came for me. I was left with so many more questions, but far more faith.

I am thankful God allowed Emotion Focused Therapy to light up my heart to help others years ago, knowing I would need it so clearly in my own marriage. Thanks be to God.


I’m Published!

Someday I will get into a good rhythm with this blog (having my pc fixed will help!). In the meantime, I wanted to share the good news that I have published my first official article! I am pretty excited. It was quite a thrill to pour myself into something heartfelt and then see it arrive in my mailbox in print.

I just discovered I can point you to the online version, so until I have my pc all to myself again to do some more blogging (I keep stealing my hard working husband’s whenever I can) here is the link to some other writing I have been doing. Once you get there click on the Spring 2011 Newsletter and scroll to page 11. My article was given the title “From Happiness to Grief and Back Again” (my original title was “A Case for the Range” which was obviously a bit out there to make sense to the masses – I’ll take the edited title:). Or you can go to http://www.wamft.org and click on the newsletter tab to get there.

If you take the time to find and read it I would love to hear your thoughts. It would not only mean something to me personally but professionally it will inform my work as a therapist too. If you have a story to share of when you have felt affirmed, and therefore cared for, when you were not at your best and it made you better, I would love to post those too.

I definitely feel encouraged to get some more inspired thoughts out there as soon as I can!

Hope you feel encouraged in whatever emotional state you are in today (you’ll see what I mean:).