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Help for the Holidays

The Brown Family

Everything seemed perfectly normal in the Brown household on that August day in 2015. Mara took the four kids shopping for school supplies while Steve worked; after dinner, the family went to the pool and then watched a meteor shower. That night, at about one am, Steve awoke to a commotion in the bathroom. Mara had suddenly collapsed and died.

Now three years later, 15-year-old daughter Mary Cate and her father, Steve, are on a mission to help other families who have suffered loss. They are both participating in Hospice Austin’s free panel discussion next Thursday, “Surviving the Holidays.” The holidays can be extremely painful for people who have experienced the loss of a loved one.

Hospice Austin has developed many offerings to help loved ones get through the holidays this season. They are all free and open to anyone in our community.

Surviving the Holidays

Have you lost someone dear to you and you are dreading the holiday season? For support and guidance on how to get through the holidays, please join Hospice Austin on Thursday, Nov. 15 for its annual Surviving the Holidays gathering. The program will include a short panel presentation followed by discussion. Refreshments will be served. The event is non-religious and there is no cost to attend. There is no need to RSVP. Surviving the Holidays will take place on November 15th from 7-9 pm at Westover Hills Church, 8332 Mesa Dr. 78759.  For those unable to attend, click here for helpful resources on our website.

Drop-in Grief Groups (offered in both North and South Austin)

November 13th – Grief during the Holidays: Grieving in a World that Continues On 
The grief process can be especially difficult in the face of a fast-paced world that continues to move forward while our lives have seemingly come to a halt. This is especially apparent during the holiday season. Join us for a discussion about how to set realistic expectations for grief in a world that wants us to return back to our old selves. 12:00 – 1:00 pm, Hospice Austin, 4107 Spicewood Springs Rd. 78759

November 20th – Family Differences in Grieving 
Grieving within a family can bring deeper connection, feelings of isolation and strain or a combination of experiences. Join us to talk about the dynamics of grieving within a family. (Topics are used as a starting point for each group, however participants are free to bring up any issues and topics they would like to discuss)12:00 – 1:00 pm, Shepherd of the Hills Presbyterian Church, 5226 W. William Cannon Dr. 78749

November 27th – Family Differences in Grieving 
Grieving within a family can bring deeper connection, feelings of isolation and strain or a combination of experiences. Join us to talk about the dynamics of grieving within a family. (Topics are used as a starting point for each group, however participants are free to bring up any issues and topics they would like to discuss.) 12:00 – 1:00 pm, Hospice Austin, 4107 Spicewood Springs Rd. 78759

December 4th  – Holiday Check-In – What have you learned from holidays that have already passed this year? How have you managed so far? What are you anticipating in the upcoming days? Join us for ideas and support. 12:00 – 1:00 pm, Shepherd of the Hills Presbyterian Church, 5226 W. William Cannon Dr. 78749

 December 11th – Holiday Check-In – What have you learned from holidays that have already passed this year? How have you managed so far? What are you anticipating in the upcoming days? Join us for ideas and support. 12:00 – 1:00 pm, Hospice Austin, 4107 Spicewood Springs Rd. 78759

 December 18th  – Self-Care While Grieving – When you grieve you have little energy for anything else in life. Appetite may be decreased or lacking and sleep may be a problem. You may not feel like cooking or exercising, and you are more vulnerable to health problems because you are under stress. We will talk about some simple steps to help your emotional, physical and spiritual health, especially during the difficult and stressful time of the holiday season. 12:00 – 1:00 pm, Shepherd of the Hills Presbyterian Church, 5226 W. William Cannon Dr. 78749

December 27th – Self-Care While Grieving – When you grieve you have little energy for anything else in life. Appetite may be decreased or lacking and sleep may be a problem. You may not feel like cooking or exercising, and you are more vulnerable to health problems because you are under stress. We will talk about some simple steps to help your emotional, physical and spiritual health, especially during the difficult and stressful time of the holiday season. 12:00 – 1:00 pm, Hospice Austin, 4107 Spicewood Springs Rd. 78759

Conversations On Grief:
Navigating Loss Through Supportive and Educational Online Webinars

Conversations On Grief offers free online access to grief support and education through your phone, computer or mobile device. You can participate in these 60-minute webinars from the comfort of your home. This program is offered the 2nd Wednesday of each month from 7:30 pm to 8:30 pm. You’re welcome to attend one, several or all webinars. Click here to register.

Wednesday, November 14th How to Grieve, Decorate, and Deep Fry Your Turkey 7:30 to 8:30 pm. As fall begins and the holidays begin to stack up, you may find yourself wishing you could go into hibernation until after Valentine’s Day. In this webinar we will discuss how to survive the holidays with a broken heart by sifting out what is important and making a plan that works for you.

December 12th – Caring for Others While You Grieve

It can feel as though you have to choose between giving yourself space to grieve and supporting loved ones who are grieving. Join us to clarify and discern your own needs and priorities as well as how to learn about the needs and priorities of your loved ones. We will looks at ways to love, care for and listen to yourself while also caring for others.

Please call the Bereavement Department at 512-342-4700 if you have any questions or would like more information or visit HospiceAustin.org/bereavment.


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