About the Author
R. W. Alley is the illustrator for the popular Abbey Press adult series of Elf-help books, as well as an illustrator and writer of children’s books. He lives in Barrington, Rhode Island, with his wife, daughter, and son. See a wide variety of his works at: www.rwalley.com.
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Sad Isn't Bad
A Good-grief Guidebook for Kids Dealing With Loss
By Michaelene Mundy, R. W. Alley
Abbey PressCopyright © 1998 Michaelene Mundy
All rights reserved.
It's Okay to Cry
When someone you care about dies, it's very sad. There will be tears, but tears can be good. Sad isn't bad.
You might feel like you are too big to cry. You're not. You might even notice yourself crying at things that didn't use to bother you—a shoe that won't tie, a toy that breaks, homework that seems too hard.
Talk to someone you trust about these feelings. Tell yourself it's okay to cry when you're sad. You have a good reason.
It's Okay to Ask Questions
Your mom or dad may seem too busy to talk to you—because of getting things ready for the funeral. But they still love you. Find another caring adult or older brother or sister you can talk to.
The funeral home is a place to say good-bye to the person who has died—and to be with people who care about you. Join in the talking and the remembering, the tears and the laughter.
You may be curious about things like the casket, or the body, or what will happen at the cemetery. Ask someone to explain the things you wonder or worry about.
It's Not Your Fault
You may think that you somehow caused your loved one to get sick or have the accident or die. If you feel this way, tell a grown-up about it. The two of you can talk about how it wasn't your fault.
It's normal to feel bad about some time when you may have hurt or made your loved one mad. But remember that he or she forgives you and God forgives you, too. Forgive yourself.
It's Good to Share Your Feelings
When you lose someone close, you might feel sad, mad, scared, or lonely. If you try to hold these feelings inside, it can make you feel even worse. Talk about how you are feeling right now with someone who cares about you.
Sometimes people get stomachaches or headaches when they're really sad. After all, you feel sad all over—in your mind and your body. Tell a grown-up if this happens to you.
When you're alone, you may think more about what upsets you. You might have trouble going to sleep at night. Read a favorite story or ask someone to snuggle in and read to you.
Where Is Your Loved One Now?
Many people think about death as a birth—the birth of a new spirit. Just as a caterpillar changes into a beautiful butterfly, your loved one is free and happy and beautiful now, too.
But you may wonder where your loved one is. Many people believe that when someone dies, his or her spirit goes to be with God in heaven. What do you believe?
Most people believe that we will be together with our loved ones and God after our lives here on earth. What do you think it will be like to be with your loved one again?
Trust That You Will Be Taken Care Of
Even though someone you loved has died, this does not mean that you will be left all alone. There will always be people to take care of you.
You might feel scared that you or someone else you love will die, too. Most people live a long life. Talk with a parent or another grown-up about ways that you stay healthy and safe.
Remember that being sick usually does not mean someone will die. A doctor can cure most sicknesses or injuries, or they will heal on their own with rest and medicine.
Excerpted from Sad Isn't Bad by Michaelene Mundy, R. W. Alley. Copyright © 1998 Michaelene Mundy. Excerpted by permission of Abbey Press.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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