I have returned. I am back from two days of training to be a volunteer for Sands. I am glad that the training is behind me, even though I thoroughly enjoyed it. Well, I do not know if enjoy is the correct word. It was intense, but not as hard as what I thought it might be.
We discussed many issues around stillbirth and bereavement. We focused a lot of the time on how to actually provide support to a bereaved parent, or couple. I found the talk about communication - both written and in person - very helpful. We talked about body language - always an interesting topic - and how to talk to bereaved parents.
I found it very insightful into the grieving process. Some topics, like embarrassment which people may feel about getting emotional, was helpful for me because it reaffirms the point that everyone is different and everybody responds to grief in different ways. I had not even thought that someone might not open up in a meeting because they would be worried about crying.
The ways that people deal with grief and the emotions that come up are so diverse that I need to be reminded sometimes of other possible ways which people may cope with their situation and their grief. Just because I have not dealt with a certain situation does not mean that it is not out there. And, on the flipside, just because I talk about Patrick and have photos up does not mean that every person displays photos of their child and talks openly about them. There is a myriad of ways which people react to their situation and cope with grief in their life.
It was a very insightful few days. I look forward to moving on with all the work that is in the pipeline for 2017.