Tuesday, March 30, 2010

A compassionate message to anyone affected by grief...

Don't miss anything...

About the Book
About the Author
Personal Letters
Bonus Article
Table of Contents
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Among comforting paintings by artist Michal Sparks, brief stories, personal experiences, and prayers offer a meaningful path toward healing for readers when they:

  • feel alone and lost in their grief and want to reconnect with others and to life

  • seek to make sense of their loss alongside their sense of faith, purpose, and God

  • want to honor their loved one without clinging to the past in unhealthy ways
Readers are given gentle permission to grapple with doubt, seek peace, and reflect on loss in their own way without judgment and with understanding and hope. A perfect gift for a loved one dealing with loss and grief.


Liz Allison was married to NASCAR driver Davey Allison until his tragic death in 1993. Widowed at 28 with two young children to raise, Liz faced the long journey of pain, loss, and grief with great faith. Committed to encouraging others, she returned to her work in TV reporting, has published eight books, and hosts a weekly radio show. Please visit

Cecil Murphey is an international speaker and bestselling author who has written more than 100 books, including New York Times bestseller 90 Minutes in Heaven (with Don Piper). No stranger himself to loss and grief, Cecil has served as a pastor and hospital chaplain for many years, and through his ministry and books he has brought hope and encouragement to countless people around the world.

Please visit

PERSONAL LETTERS -  Why We Write About Loss
On the morning of July 12, 1992, my husband, Davey, left home like any other morning—he kissed my forehead and hugged our kids.That afternoon I answered a knock at the door, sensing something wasn’t quite right. When I glimpsed the faces of Davey’s two best friends—they didn't have to speak—the looks on their faces said it all.

That day, after lunch with his race team, Davey had hopped into his helicopter and taken an unplanned trip to the nearby Talladega Superspeedway to watch a buddy practice. Attempting to land in the infield, he had lost control of his helicopter and crashed. Although paramedics airlifted Davey to a Birmingham hospital, sixteen hours later he was pronounced dead.

Immediately following Davey’s death, I had to work through my grief enough to plan his funeral and make hundreds of small-but-significant decisions, all while maintaining the time and energy to care for our two young children, ages one and three. Well-wishing friends hovered around me and frequently asked, “What can I do for you?

Most of the time, I could only respond with a blank stare. Looking back, my friends could have done many things for me, but they didn’t know what to do, and I didn’t know what to tell them.

I hope the insights I have gained during the aftermath of Davey’s death will help you as you struggle with your own grief.


Two weeks after my father suffered a ministroke, a massive stroke took his life. On the day of his funeral, my older brother, Ray, died of cancer. Over the next eighteen months, I lost two brothers-in-law and my mother.

On the Sunday after Dad’s and Ray’s funerals, a parishioner rushed up to me, hugged me, and said, “Pastor, I heard about the deaths. Were they saved?”

I honestly don’t remember what I answered, but I wanted to shout, “Does it matter right now? I hurt. I’m so filled with pain that I’m not sure I can handle the worship service today!”

In 2007, our house burned down. Our son-in-law, Alan, died in the fire. The next day, a neighbor pulled up in front of our burned house, got out of his car, and started to look around. “Where did he die?” he asked.

Through the years, I’ve met many like those two people. Maybe they didn’t know what to say. Perhaps they were so focused on what they cared about that they were unaware of my pain. Instead of helping me, those comments made me feel even worse. What I needed was compassion. I didn’t get that from either of them, but I can offer it to you.

That’s why we’ve written this book.


Words of Comfort for Times of Loss
Little Joys
                                                           You're Not Alone
One Simple Thing
Accepting Help
Make It Go Away
Why Did You Leave Me?
If Only I Had
What's Wrong With Self-pity?
Perfect Grieving
Am I Crazy?
Material Possessions
Facing Those Special Days
Words of Comfort for Times of Loss
Heaven Is Real
Gift Edition, 90 Minutes in Heaven
Journal       Pens   Potato soup   Oyster crackers    Dove silky smooth milk chocolate
ultra-plush spa socks     large gel eye mask

This special grandprize giveaway is designed especially for someone going through a difficult time. The winner can keep or pass along to someone who could use the pick-me-up.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Depression is contagious

TMZ posted this headline 2/28/10: Marie Osmond Son: Suicide note shows sadness. Michael Blosil jumped to his death to end his 'torment' from depression.

It is a familiar story to Patricia Gallagher, author of No More Secrets- A Family Speaks About Depression, Anxiety and Attempted Suicide. Her husband, John, faced uncertainty at work and anxiety landed him in the hospital where he jumped from an open window. John survived. That landing from 40 feet brought pain to the entire family in ways they never imagined. Quickly a web of lies began to maintain appearances as that happy family featured on Oprah a few years earlier when life was good.

Patricia Gallagher and her family appeared in a segment about her book Raising Happy Kids on a Reasonable Budget. A dream come true for any author and her family!
 Today, the family tells a different story about depression and it's ripple effect on family members. They have found healing and peace as they help other families facing depression, addictions and difficult situations.

I asked Patricia to share her thoughts in a recent interview:

How can you relate to Marie Osmond's son suffering from depression and chosing to end his life?

I honestly, am finding that I feel too deeply when I hear about tragedies such as the Osmond family. When it's someone's child, it is almost too much for me. I think because of writing the book, and doing all of the research....I have found this type of tragedy is more common that I could ever have imagined. It is so heartbreaking.

What gets you through those unthinkable circumstances?

For me, I kept running, running, running, being busy...then I discovered a true faith in God to help me. I went to church and was a 'good person' but during all that was happening with John and the residual effect on our family, financially and emotionally, I had to really hold on to God as my anchor. I started writing prayers/poems. As I look back, I realize they were 'desperate housewife's ' plea for heavenly assistance. That is how the Team of Angels Project began.

How does a loved one with depression effect those around them?

Depression seems to be contagious. We were all affected because of John's negativity and pervasive sadness. It wasn't his fault because depression is a disease, but in our case, it was not being treated, because we didn't have a name for what was happening. We just didn't know why he was acting the way he was. I was frustrated.

What are some ways family members can stay emotionally healthy while
 living with someone suffering from depression.

Find a support group; tell other people; reach out for help at church, friends, relatives; seek counsel; join on-line communities to vent.

Patricia suggests organizations like NAMI, Depression Bi-Polar Support Alliance and Mental Health America for help. Other resources are listed on their website From there visit their on-line community blog and find book ordering information.