So where do I begin with the grief that I am feeling for the loss of my parent.  As a Client Care Coordinator at NJELC, I listen and guide clients every day on what I am now going through.  I recently lost my dear father who was my best friend, confidant and biggest cheerleader.  For the last 14 years after my mother died, I was able to pay back all the things that he did for me and I, in turn, was able to spoil him when I could.

We went through placing him in assisted living, taking him home and hiring a full-time aid when COVID happened, dealing with hospice, and now Estate Administration after his passing.  As if that was not bad enough, we were not able to have a proper service due to COVID.  All the family was not able to come to together for the fear of contracting the virus.  Now I am dealing with the overwhelming dread of the holidays that are looming and its almost more than I can bear.  Yet, this is what I help people with every day and now I am living this nightmare.

Instead of curling up and putting my head in a pillow, I am going to try and see what this experience has taught me and what I can bring away from this.  Certainly, I can show even more empathy than I did before.  I want to reach out to all those clients, friends, families, professionals, and co-workers that are going through the same or a similar situation.  If there is anything at all that I can do for you or if you just need to talk, let me know.  Even under the best of circumstances losing a loved one is so hard, but during these unprecedented COVID times the pain is immeasurable. 

During this holiday season, if you need advice or just want to talk, please feel free to reach out to me anytime.  I am sending virtual hugs to all those that have had a loss or are experiencing making decisions for a loved one during these difficult times.  Be kind and hold each other because you do not know what your friend, neighbor or co-worker is going through. I hope that you have a safe and happy holiday and enjoy time with those that you love, whether it be in person, via chat, phone or even a simple wave and smile across the street.