I treasure every moment with my parents. In this picture, I am taking them out from their nursing facility to our weekly lunch with my older brother. In spite of grief, I’ve kept my smile my whole life and plan to continue to do so.

These four blue links below are recordings of my voice lessons discussing my song “Clear” with Peaches Chrenko:




Below is an excerpt from my audio book. It is from a story near the end of my book called “Healing Came At Last.” In this excerpt, I speak about my healing and then read my poem “My Tears Filled an Ocean.” I play my original acoustic guitar composition “Waterfalls” in the background.

MY TEARS FILLED AN OCEAN – Audio Book excerpt – Copyright 2012 by Judy Unger 

The words and post where I originally wrote “My Tears Filled An Ocean” can be found by clicking the blue link below.



A sad message below from someone in my grief forum responding to someone else’s message of deep grief:

I don’t have any good words either, other than I understand the pain. My faith also has been tested; I’m starting to think that maybe this life here on earth is Hell, because I can’t imagine anything else being as bad as the pain we feel from losing our children. And I can’t wait to be reunited with my son.

On Dec. 15, 2011, Ann wrote:

Hi Judy, I would like to have anything you would like to send me. I am so broken hearted . . . I lost another brother this morning. I have lost so many loved ones in the past two years. I am just moving around in a dark fog.

It is so hard; sometimes I think I will just die from a broken heart. This is more than one person should have to endure.

Dearest Ann,

We are all going to die someday, and there are many people who actually do die from a broken heart. I went to a funeral just a month ago for a man who died as a result of his grief.

Does that allow us to be with our loved ones – death? Perhaps. When we die, then we will know for sure. However, we are still alive. Why are we still alive with so much pain? That is a hard question that I do not have an answer for.

When someone grieves this deeply, it means you had immense love – so much so that it has caused your exquisite agony. That means you have the capacity to love, and most certainly, others in your life love you, as well.

They are hurting to imagine losing you! Imagine how much more pain would be magnified if you died! Perhaps you can reach out to those who love you to help you endure this. The pain does not go away and I’m not minimizing your loss. It is too much for one person to endure. But I am certain you will. Allow yourself to cry and find any way you can to help yourself feel better. Carrying the memories and love can help you survive the pain. Expressing your love to others is the best way.

It’s just too soon for you to die. That is a serious message you are giving yourself. Instead of telling yourself you will die from a broken heart, tell yourself that your enormous heart will continue to love and it will eventually stop bleeding. Your loved ones want that for you – trust me!

Love, Judy

My doctor told me yesterday that I am living in a fantasy world, just because I said that I want my wife back. I know that I have to go on and live a new life without her. I just am not ready to do so. People who haven’t been married and truly bonded just don’t understand that the feeling really is like a part of me has died, too. While some may say that’s not a healthy way to feel, all I can say is that it’s real for me. 

I want to feel better, to feel peace again. I have periods of time when I seem to be doing pretty well. Then, out of nowhere something triggers me and I can barely function. 

My life, while it may improve someday, will not be what it was and that’s the harsh fact. As much as anything, that reality haunts me daily. 

There is a new diagnosis in the DSM called “Prolonged Grief Disorder”. Well, I have it. Two and one half years is a long time to feel sad and depressed and angry and all the rest. I will never feel the old “normal” again and that tears me out of the frame some days. 

The only people I trust are the folks who have shared this experience. They have the wisdom I need. The rest, no matter how well intended, I just dismiss. 


Dear Joe (and anyone else in deep grief that is feeling discouraged),

There is a lot of commiserating that goes on in this forum. I’m not going to even go near the place of saying I know how you feel; you are a widower and I have lost a child. I cannot imagine losing a soul mate, and I do not compare grief because that leads to further isolation. I used to feel like even other grieving people could hardly imagine the depth of my pain, but I still very much agreed with your last line. When I was in deep grief, I surrounded myself with people who were grieving like I was.

I remember feeling haunted by the loss of my former life and the fact that I would never feel the “old normal again.” You wrote that it “tears you out of your frame,” which is such an eloquent way to say that. I wish I could say that healing comes sooner. It might be almost three years now for you; I won’t even write how long it took me.

But what I want to share is don’t give up hope. You will feel better someday and you will have a depth of compassion to help other people as a result of your loss. Your wife will always be with you, in spirit and in memories.

One day, you will feel joyful. And you will remember this message. Until then, keep going as you have. You are grieving. It’s awful, unbearable, and discouraging. But never give up hope. There aren’t many messages written like mine on this forum.  Everyone needs to have hope.

If there was hope for me, there could be hope for anyone. I suffered a lot and wanted to die when I was grieving. No one can imagine it unless they’ve suffered.

You take care, Judy

On Dec 29, 2011, Janet wrote:

I wish the New Year could be better. I’ve got a 78 yr. old father who I am afraid to lose. He’s in good health, but that could change. I hope it doesn’t. My Mom got sick in April and was gone in July. It can happen so fast. I don’t feel safe. I don’t want to lose anyone else either.


Dear Janet,

My parents are very sick and I don’t think they will both be with me a year from now. I feel like I’ve already lost my mother, since her mind is gone due to advanced dementia. But I still feel her love, and appreciate that. I treasure my parents and their love.

Two years ago, I healed from my grief. I used to live with a lot of fear after my 5-year-old son died, and I mourned the loss of my innocence. My fear was paralyzing and interfered with living life to my full potential.

Life is a gift. It is finite. We will all die and so will those whom we love – the natural order is that our parents go first. Fear destroys the potential to find happiness. I wish you could find some acceptance about your eventual and inevitable loss. That would make your time very meaningful and precious with your father. While he’s in good health you could form beautiful memories and those will sustain you when he’s gone.

I know that life is full of pain. Moving forward toward not being afraid of future loss is a huge step. You have suffered a lot losing your mom so suddenly. Before that happened, you were not aware that you might lose someone you loved so fast. That is the nature of innocence and believing that everyone can live forever.

Every minute counts. Janet, I pray you can find peace and realize that. Your dad would definitely want you to – and your mom.

With love, Judy

I think I look happy here in this picture with my brother, Norm, and sister-in-law, Jo. This was taken at one of our weekly lunches with my parents.-

On Jan 2, 2012, Susan wrote:

Judy, I wanted to thank you for sending me the new song and stuff. I haven’t listened to it yet, because I have been really touchy lately about Mom’s death, and I don’t want to get hysterical again. When I am in a frame of mind to listen, I will. I am so appreciative of the fact that you care and sent me those songs.  I really mean that. But lately lots of things have triggered some intense emotional outbursts. I have to try to keep on an even keel. When my apple cart gets upset, I have Hell to pay to rebalance it. Hugs, Susan

Hi Susan,

Thanks for letting me know you received. My latest song is called “Clear” and moves beyond “Hanging On.” What I’m about to write is not about dealing with deep, intense grief. Those feelings are impossible to contain. This is about moving beyond grief when you feel stuck. I lived for a long time without allowing myself to express feelings. My song is about how I truly did move from being a “Zombie” to feeling clarity.


I want to write to you about your fear and what it takes for you to keep on an even keel. It sounds to me like you are fearful of your intense emotions. However, holding those feelings in and keeping on an “even keel” requires tremendous energy, which is draining you. It is actually causing you to live in Hell without you realizing it. Even though it is like throwing up to release those feelings, it is a relief after. Being hysterical is ok! Stuffing is really not healthy. Once you get to a place where you allow yourself to feel, other emotions such as joy could return to your life.


Keep hanging in there, Susan. I care.

Love, Judy

A page of my lyrics for my newest song “Clear” in progress.

© Judy Unger and http://www.myjourneysinsight.com 2012. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Judy Unger with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

About Judy

I'm an illustrator by profession. At this juncture in my life, I am pursuing my dream of writing and composing music. Every day of my life is precious!
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