Grief, Loss and Moving Forward


Untitled by Program Participant, Pastel on Fabriano paper, 12" x 18", 2014

Untitled by Program Participant, Pastel on Fabriano paper, 12″ x 18″, 2014

 “I want my heart to leap with joy again. I am starting to feel like laughing. Before, I only half  laughed.” Grief, loss and sorrow can explain how one feels after they loose a loved one. After four years of mourning, the words grief, loss and sorrow may not show a wideness of expression anymore. They remain too small, too single focused and too connected to the initial loss. My client is now at a point in her grieving process, four years, to search for new words which will more aptly define and describe her current state of  bereavement. The Bodyscapes Technique offered her an opportunity to use expressive art therapy to search the wideness of language to re-define how she feels today. The self-healing which comes through The Bodyscapes Technique, comes in unexpected ways. On the morning of the session, my client woke with a pain she never had before, a pain in her left foot.

We started our Bodyscapes session using the words, grief/loss, left foot, and sorrow. Grief defines as bereavement, suffering, separation, defense and pain. We uncovered my client’s ache, distress, unhappiness of an end, a conclusion, a final turning point, expired and last. Her deep sense of pathos and doom, besieged and long-suffering. “This morning, I went on my morning walk and all of a sudden, the heel of my left foot started to hurt. It hurts right now.” We looked up the definition for the word, left, to uncover the definitions, located near the heart, freedom and a desire to reform. “I do have a rebellious streak. I never believed in the mean God the nuns taught. And I told them so.”  The word,  foot, brought us to the words, terminal part, attachment, locomotion, and dance A search through the thesaurus added words which fell into categories of ideas around the words sorrow, terminal, convert and dance. Transform, progress and passion touched upon my client’s internal sense that she is moving into a state to give into resolution and reform-to dance and rejoice, to smile, to bless, to burst out jubilant into joy again.

Bodyscapes sessions close with a period of reflection. Participants softly recite their writing over and over while looking at their drawing.  With their external attention focused on their words and drawing, participants can generate a corresponding internal energetic focus directly on the source of their illness to promote self-healing. “I can feel the pain leaving. It started to go as soon as I began to draw. Looking at the drawing now, I see the redness, the heat in the heel. The discomfort and distress on the plantar’s part of the sole. But, I can feel it coming out, the pain is leaving as I look at the drawing. ALl the lines around my foot are the rays of the pain leaving, moving away. I am moving without pain restrictions.”

Client Testimonial:

Hi Diane,

 I enjoyed our session on Saturday. Thank you very much for the opportunity to put my thoughts and emotions into an artistic expression…..I have yet to sit and look over my words and put them together into some form of poetry or prose….The experience really opened up my mind to a deeper awareness of my feelings regarding the loss I have felt after my Mother and my Husband died….and I feel as though my foot is working through this grief, as my Left foot seems to be feeling better and now my R foot is feeling some pain….”a work in progress”….

The Red & Orange House relies on support from individual donors to maintain our work in hospitals and other healthcare facilities. Each gift brings another art-making experience to a patient’s bedside, their family sitting in a family surgical waiting room, a private home or a workshop. Donor benefits include a weekly subscription to our upcoming newsletter. You can share the powerful healing moments experienced by program participants and their families. 

The Red & Orange House is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization; all gifts are tax-deductible to the extent allowable by law.

cell: 561.715.7878





Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s