The Support Group

September 8th, 2011

Photos by The Style Crone

The SC has been a member of a hospice creative arts grief support group for the past four weeks, with two weeks to go.  Each week we are asked to express our grief through a different art modality.  It has been extremely helpful to be amidst others who have recently lost loved ones, and to provide and receive support within an empathetic and facilitated setting.  Last week we were asked to visualize and visit a location that felt safe, a place where we could communicate with the person that we had lost, and then to create that setting on/in a box that had a very familiar shape to someone who lives in ‘hat world.’  The hat room was my chosen space, where I feel the most comfortable, and accessing this room is not dependent on weather, travel or time of day. Art supplies were provided and miraculously I discovered rose pink yarn that was similar to the color of the 40’s fringe trimmed chair that resides in the hat room.  I found myself wrapping the yarn around the box and magically it all came together for me without conscious thought.  How fortunate for The SC that a leopard print ribbon screamed out for attention from the shelves of supplies. Available feathers quickly became hats and plastic fruit the trim for the tiny chapeaux.  I added the vintage orange silk flower at home following the group, and quickly filled the box with small momentos that previously didn’t have a home.  The box sits on the rose pink chair, providing comfort and inviting me to visit and to communicate with Nelson, in my mind’s eye, at any time, day or night.  The SC is grateful for this gift!

18 Responses to “The Support Group”

  1. Terri

    What an interesting project. I learned today that a colleague of nearly 25 years passed away this morning. It has given me pause all day because HE was very active in hospice in our area.

  2. SizzleandZoom

    I love the leopard print trim on your little box. Very thoughtful heartfelt project. I wish you peace.

  3. Carolyn Fineran

    Delightful! I can just see this little business of decorated hat boxes…sort of like the Rose Ladies…creative, fun, beautiful.

  4. Melanie

    “Creating” something personally meaningful and associated with a lost loved one is a great way to express the pain within, isn’t it? Since I lost my son last December, I haven’t stopped picking a particular weed flower he used to give me from our garden when he was a very young child. Putting the flowers in a small vase on my desk has enabled me to say a prayer for him every time I see it…and “talk” to him about how I miss him! Love and peace to you!

  5. rose

    How healing is art and friendship and being amongst others who are travelling along the same road as you. I’m glad that you have found yet another avenue that brings you peace and helps you move forward.

    Love from all of us cyber friends who read your blog,
    Rose from England

  6. WendyB

    I love Victorian mourning jewelry for the same reasons.

  7. Debbie

    So glad you have a place to go that helps you through this difficult time. What a lovely symbol of your love for Nelson and at the same time a comfort to you.

  8. Susan Tiner

    Your chapeaux is so pretty and inviting and comfortable looking. I am glad you found it helpful being with kindred souls, and thank you again for sharing this experience with all of us.

  9. Pam @over50feeling40

    These look like you and I think this is such a wonderful way to express what you are feeling. I went to an event last night that I wish you had been there with me. You would have fit right in with all of the stylish ladies of SA. You are such an inspiration to me!

  10. Jean

    Thank you for sharing this. Love you. …J

  11. janine

    Oh, those hospice support groups are such a blessing! They do this SO well. I am so glad to hear that you found one. It is really healing to be amongst others in deep grief, an unsought community to be sure, but comforting nonetheless. Can you continue on, once this one is completed?

    May I add, I love the bodaciousness of your box – the plastic fruit and orange flower just make it incredible! What a wonderful project. May it continue to mark that sacred space where you can sit and be still and “be” with Nelson and all those beautiful beautiful memories.

    Thank you so much for sharing this with us.

  12. Paula

    This is so great and something I could totally relate to–expressing through art! So glad it helped you too~much love–Paula

  13. Serene

    Aren’t touch stones so important? There’s something to remembering through tactile gestures. Your box seems to symbolize so much of what you and your husband shared. AND the fact that he loved this wonderful stylish gift that you have. Definitely continue speaking with you, because I have no doubt he hears you!! What a great project! One of the many reasons that I’m so thankful for the work of Hospice. Much love and hugs to you! ~Serene

  14. Linda

    The feeling of loss is so intimate, yet can often be processed better when shared with people who understand. I am so glad you have a support group which is helping, SC. When I lost my mother several years ago, the doctor was resistant to get hospice involved. As a consequence, we only had hospice for two days before my mother died, mainly because I insisted and called myself. They felt like strangers because the situation was intense and they were there only long enough to assess the situation, not actually help. When they offered a grief support group to me, I rejected it. I have read that the average dying person tends to have hospice support for less than a week, so my experience was typical. Such a shame.

  15. déjà pseu

    I’m so glad you’ve found some comfort and healing through this project. Hospice is such a wonderful organization, helping us through the toughest of times. And art, art is life sometimes.

  16. Lonnie

    What a wonderful Melage’ a wonderful soup! Such vibrant style crone on a box!
    Bravo – sorry for the delay, technical difficulties….L

  17. Coastalharp

    Hospice Savannah got me started as a music practitioner. Their love, concern and attitude about death was what got me started as a music practitioner….playing harp for healing and transition. Such an honor to play as an instrument of transition.
    You are so beautiful and creative.

  18. Joan Price

    I know that when we go through grief, we’re convinced that only people who have gone through it themselves can truly understand how we feel. How lucky we are to have the angels of Hospice, who know how to guide us and counsel us, and know when it’s time to share our journey with a group.

    I love this project you did! Meaningful, artistic, and so YOU!


    Joan Price

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