How to Love On After A Devastating Loss

—And Make Life Beautiful for Others Around You

There is nothing more personal than the way one grieves. For most of us, being faced with the loss of a near and dear one is not only unimaginable, it is also one of our worst fears. This fear is not unfounded, though, because no matter how “prepared” you think you can be for the demise of a beloved, when it actually happens, you really have no idea how you will react emotionally and physically. Because no two people are alike, it’s only natural that every individual’s reaction to a deep personal grief or loss is very unique. What is useful, however, is to hear from others how they dealt with loss and grief—it gives you strength and comfort in knowing that someone else has felt a similar pain and lived through it. That is the premise on which Grief Resource Centers like the one in The Woodlands, Texas are founded.

This coming Saturday, November 3, 2012, the 3rd Annual Jazz Brunch, a popular fundraiser, is being held at the The Woodlands Resort & Conference Center. I will be the keynote speaker this year and share my thoughts and experiences on “How to Live On After A Devastating Loss”.

For someone reading or hearing about me for the first time, my background and credentials may seem somewhat disconnected to the topic of this upcoming motivational speaking engagement. Health and fitness expert, successful entrepreneur, acclaimed and award-winning author, personal trainer, sports nutritionist, bodybuilder and winner of many beauty pageants—so where does all this fit in with speaking about grief and loss? If one were to believe that inner beauty is what reflects on the outside to make a person beautiful, it would be logical to assume that my life has been easy, uncomplicated and happy. Possessing inner beauty would be easy for someone who has not seen a life of pain.

In my case, the story is quite the opposite. Not only has my life been challenging in many ways, I have also seen extremely deep and personal loss and grief. But I have lived through all of that with a smile AND I strive to help others face grief with the same tenacity I did.

“I lost my 19 year-old son in a car accident. My 23 year-old brother died of a heart attack. My father, whom I was very close to, died when I was quite young. With each blow I felt as if my life was over but a voice deep within me said it wasn’t—that my life had a purpose and that’s why I was still here to live on after losing my closest loved ones. It was up to me to find that purpose and work towards achieving it. I may not quite have reached my goal yet, but I can truly say I have found my purpose. And that purpose is to make friends with life and help change lives one small step at a time. That’s what I am trying to do.

No one says the road to healing is easy or that there is one proven path to get there. But if others have taken the journey and lived to tell their story, you can too. That is my core message I wish to communicate through my speeches like the one I am scheduled to present at the Jazz Brunch this weekend.”—Theresa Roemer

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