Then, I have to remember back to when I
first began attending POMC meetings and how hard it was. It took me another couple of years to attend my first POMC
conference, held by the Minnesota Hope Chapter.
Once I attended one though, I knew I
would attend again, despite the fact I was emotionally drained when I returned. You see, nothing in life
after murder is ever the same.
We are emotionally drained after a birthday
party, a wedding, or graduation. Drained because we are constantly reminded of the fact our loved one no longer shares
the milestones of our lives, drained because of the continual reminder that life goes on without them – never
the same – but it does goes on.
That first conference I timidly attended all
those years ago taught me so much.
The workshops were amazingly helpful,
informative and one actually had a room full of survivors laughing their heads off. Can you imagine a workshop
that could make you laugh when still tormented by the nightmare of f resh, traumatic grief? Darcie Sims, a grief
therapist who specialized in humor, was presenting just such a workshop, and did we laugh!
We laughed because she showed us
how to laugh – at all the tuna casseroles we received after our loved one died, at all the “stupid”
comments people make to us attempting to make us feel better in their extreme discomfort. We even laughed at the sight
of Darcie wearing sunglasses with wipers for the tears, and how she filled her pockets with toilet tissue rolls, because
one Kleenex was not enough for us.
We laughed because we needed to laugh,
to purge some of the pent up emotions dragging us down and Darcie, a bereaved parent herself, showed us we could. Rest
in peace dearest Darcie. (she died this past February)
I cried at that conference too. Of course,
I cried. You cannot attend a POMC conference and not see tears at some point or another, especially during the
beautiful memorial service and the parade of smiling pictures of those no longer with us on Friday night.
But you cry among those who understand and
bonds are forged that become endless friendships. You don’t have to hide your emotions as you do in the
real world when they begin to flow. I felt comfortable to cry there, I felt emotionally and physically hugged
the whole time with hundreds of other compassionate survivors. I felt at home – something I had not
felt at the home where my son no longer existed after his murder.
After murder, we have to be shown how to do
everything again. Did you ever think you would laugh after your loved one was murdered? Did you think
you could ever feel any joy again (subsequent children and grandchildren born A.M. – after murder)? Did
you think you would ever stop fearing going outside into the real world again, or letting your surviving children and family
do so too? Did you ever think you would stop feeling anything but anger?
Come to a POMC conference and learn that
you can again feel something besides pain. Think about attending our conference this year.........I guarantee
you will be surprised, uplifted, humbled, hugged, empowered and informed. Information makes this grief journey
It arms us to cope and to endure.
This journey is made easier among others who truly understand. The conferences promote healing, rebuilding shattered
lives, and a gentleness and compassion permeates the air in odd contrast to the violence that brings us all together.
I wish none of us had to weather
this storm but why not weather it together in the safety of a port of other survivors where no one is alone.
Almost full circle from my first conference
this year we are in Minnesota again. The Southeast Minnesota chapter is hosting this year’s conference being held
Sign up now. Take care of and be
good to yourselves but sign up already. JUST COMMITT AND GO! Go on line to www.pomc.org for information and registration. Or call 888-818-7662