Grief and Loss, Books That Help Heal

Gracious words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.
— Proverbs 16:24

Read in their entirety or thumbed through to what peeks our interest, books have been a part of healing on many levels.  The diverse medley of books available on death, loss and grief each offer some aid to heal.  Yet, as unique as grief is to each individual, each book will be equally different as it will be for the individual picking and choosing what might work as they piece their life back together.

Asked what books helped heal during grief from death or the loss from three miscarriages, there were many. The majority of my book collection on healing from loss and grief formed through the love of family, friends and strangers who gave the gift of books.  Those that helped in their time of loss or those they felt offered a direct link to my path in finding peace and solace. 

Photograph by D. S. Walling

Photograph by D. S. Walling

There in the written word, pages from books that help heal gave advise, shared experiences and knowledge.  Encouragement, inspiration, motivation and peace could be had, when allowed.  A place to cope, instill optimism and even those pages the held imagery surprisingly comforted.  Some helped to heal more then others and although I did not find all the answers to my pain and sorrow, the information in books did distract if only for a short while.  Books definitely played a part in my healing and unlike people, books cannot judge.

What works for one does not necessarily work for others.  During an exchange of personal experiences and books referenced a man in his mid 50’s shared, "I cannot say I looked for any books to help me with my mother’s passing, just tears.".  A reminder, in loss how muddled the mind becomes, how loss harrows the soul and how very different we are. 

Grief, with its unpredictable self can be challenging and affects our being. Difficult to erase emotional memory, death or any experienced loss changes us to some degree and thereafter determines the quality of our life. We are different.

What books came to aid in your grief sadness?   Did books even play a part in your healing?

Photograph by D. S. Walling

Photograph by D. S. Walling

We would like to build our list of books that help heal and look forward to your recommendations.

To share your thoughts, book titles that helped heal or those you gifted to help others, do comment below.

Whether one personally searches for books to help heal, those gifted or not do find a support system during the ebb and flow of your grief. Find what works for you. Avoid those who are critical. Those who try to steal your grief from you.  You have the right to express your grief - take it one day at a time because healing of any kind, takes time. And if support is not found in books possibly the following suggestions will be helpful in your grief journey.

  • Talk with those who will listen and be supportive; family, friends, co-workers, clergy or church family
  • Meditation
  • Attend workshops or presentations
  • Experience group support or individual grief counseling
  • Contact an art therapist or think outside the box and connect with your creative side.