42 - The Whole Self Approach to Grief and Single Parenting: An Interview With Tami Millard

In today’s podcast I interview Tami Millard, who shares with us her grief and healing experiences after the sudden death of her husband, Kyron, and what it was like to raise her teenage daughter who was also grieving. Shortly after her husband’s death, Tami returned to the workplace briefly before the COVID lockdown which further complicated how she and her daughter grieved. During our interview, we explore Tami’s efforts to learn about grief, the different ways she processed her feelings, and where she is now in her grief and in her life, almost 4 years after her husband’s sudden death.

Key points:

Tami introduces her personal mission, which is to increase awareness of the whole self, specifically the social emotional aspects of who we are as individuals. She takes a whole self-approach to her grief and describes the multiple efforts she engaged to explore her feelings, connect with her inner thoughts, and monitor the relationship between her grief and the impact it had on her ability to parent, work and meet the other responsibilities in her life. 

After Kyron’s death Tami began to investigate grief; she read about it and wrote about it. She turned to her faith, relied on her support systems and used her internal beliefs to guide her, and help her cope with the most difficult experience of her life.

Tami reflects on her learnings and thought processes in grief.  She shares that she is now stepping deeper into carving out her identity, figuring out who she is as an “I” instead of a “we” and envisioning the next chapters of her life that will include the essence of Kyron and her previous existence.

In my podcast I share an excerpt from Sarah Nannen’s grief manifesto that was meaningful to Tami during her healing process:

“I remain open to learning from my pain. I remain open to experiencing true joy. I remain open to experiencing longing. I remain open to practicing gratitude. I remain open to knowing that gratitude and longing are allowed to walk hand-in-hand. I trust that the depth of my pain is not a reflection of the way I honor you, my life is. I remain open to receiving what comes next on this journey of life, knowing what has been will always be part of my story, and therefore, me.”

Please join our Facebook group “Talking about the Podcast Untethered with Dr. Levin.” I have included a sample of Tami’s writing along with a short video and family pictures in the Facebook group.

To learn more about hope and guidance after sudden or unexpected death please visit therapyheals.com and sign up for my monthly newsletter Guidance in Grief at www.therapyheals.com. Bye for now.


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