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175: Death Happens What Do You Do Next With Kimberley Pittman Schulz
2nd December 2021 • The Beyond Adversity Podcast with Dr. Brad Miller • Dr Brad Miller
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Kimberley Pittman Schulz is Dr. Brad Miller's guest on Episode 175 of "The Beyond Adversity Podcast."

Kimberley is an Award-Winning Writer, Philanthropic & End-of-Life Planner, Grief Healing Facilitator.

Kimberley asked, frequently, to speak about death. She, like most of us, is more than a job title. She's a poet and author who writes on loss, joy, and mindfulness, with a passion for all things wild and winged. As a philanthropic end-of-life planning advisor specifically, why we can be better in our relationships with donors and clients (and ourselves) when we stop avoiding and become comfortable with conversations about death, dying, and end-of-life options. 

She spent 25+ years as a charity estate planning professional and former nonprofit leader helping people from all walks of life create meaningful donations that affect the world as well as their own lives. "Well, that's excellent employment if you can get it!" said one of Kim's benefactors early in her career.

In this episode, you'll discover what it takes to overcome sadness, find your way back, and live wisely as a force for good in the world. She also debunks the notion that pain and joy are opposed. And think that even while grieving and living your life, you can do and exist with enormous delight. 

Kim's personal experience with grief and death began when she was around three and a half years old, saved from a house fire. However, her two sisters, who were sleeping in the same room as her, could not be spared. As a result, Kim, exposed to loss at an early age, which was terrible for her parents. Her mother forever changed due to the event, so loss has always been a part of who she was.

When we think of grief, we usually think of sadness and other similar emotions, but grief encompasses a wide range of emotions as well as a physical component. Our thoughts, feelings, bodies, and emotions are all intertwined. As a result, if you start steering up one region, it will stir up all of the others. 

For Kim, it got to the point that she sought out one-on-one counseling and a physician who wanted to put her on antidepressant medication. There are instances when sadness turns into true clinical depression, but Kim felt in her bones that this was unresolved grief, not depression, at the moment. It did, however, give her a sense of urgency, and she didn't want to be there forever. 

It was debilitating, and Kim struggled to sit in meetings. She should be leading a group of people, but she didn't care. Nothing was important. She eventually left that job and took one that was less demanding since she needed to take care of herself.

Anyone struggling with the death of a loved one should listen to Episode 175 of The Beyond Adversity Podcast. This audio demonstrates how to effectively deal with concerns such as emotional, physical, and mental stress when dealing with death. This episode reminds us that life is more extensive than what we're going through right now, and all we have to do is deal with the pain and keep moving on in life. 

“The Beyond Adversity Podcast with Dr. Brad Miller is published weekly with the mission of helping people “Grow Through What They Go Through” as they navigate adversity and discover their promised life of peace, prosperity and purpose. 

Website: https://www.poetowl.com/ 

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCavBXSyezBFXdMbQmbS_5_g  

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/kimberley-pittman-schulz-b055a819/  

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kimberleymindfulwriter/?hl=en 

Transcripts

Dr. Brad Miller:

Hello, good people.

Dr. Brad Miller:

And welcome to Beyond adversity with Dr. Brad Miller.

Dr. Brad Miller:

It is such a privilege to have you

Dr. Brad Miller:

join me here today.

Dr. Brad Miller:

As we help you to grow through

Dr. Brad Miller:

what you go through to defeat adversity

Dr. Brad Miller:

and to achieve your life at peace,

Dr. Brad Miller:

prosperity, and purpose,

Dr. Brad Miller:

we invite you to head over to Dr. Brad miller.com.

Dr. Brad Miller:

We have a free gift for you there

Dr. Brad Miller:

lots of resources

Dr. Brad Miller:

and over 170 episodes of the podcast,

Dr. Brad Miller:

featuring experts in personal finance

Dr. Brad Miller:

and in health, and in diet, and in relationships

Dr. Brad Miller:

and in the mental health dynamics.

Dr. Brad Miller:

And also in the area of grieving and death.

Dr. Brad Miller:

These are the areas that most of us have to deal with

Dr. Brad Miller:

some form of adversity get through it.

Dr. Brad Miller:

Today, our expert is with us

Dr. Brad Miller:

in the area of grieving

Dr. Brad Miller:

and loss and her name is Kimberly Pittman Schultz,

Dr. Brad Miller:

she's the author of grieving us,

Dr. Brad Miller:

a field guide for living with loss

Dr. Brad Miller:

without losing yourself,

Dr. Brad Miller:

her book is excellent and her process is excellent.

Dr. Brad Miller:

you're going to learn

Dr. Brad Miller:

And you're going to learn a few things here today,

Dr. Brad Miller:

about what it means to get through grief

Dr. Brad Miller:

and find your way back

Dr. Brad Miller:

and live mindfully as a force of change in the world.

Dr. Brad Miller:

And she really challenges

Dr. Brad Miller:

the assumptions that grief

Dr. Brad Miller:

and joy are opposites.

Dr. Brad Miller:

And believe that you can do

Dr. Brad Miller:

and can exist with great joy even

Dr. Brad Miller:

in the process of experiencing grief and your life.

Dr. Brad Miller:

We're going to learn about

Dr. Brad Miller:

this process that she talks about

Dr. Brad Miller:

in our conversation here.

Dr. Brad Miller:

Today, you're also going to feel some things

Dr. Brad Miller:

you can't go talk about this topic of grief

Dr. Brad Miller:

and loss without great emotion.

Dr. Brad Miller:

And Kimberly talks about losses in her family

Dr. Brad Miller:

that she experienced.

Dr. Brad Miller:

And even now dealing with tremendous profound

Dr. Brad Miller:

grief in her life,

Dr. Brad Miller:

and how she did it and how she navigated those things.

Dr. Brad Miller:

But we talked about the emotional toll

Dr. Brad Miller:

that it takes the depression,

Dr. Brad Miller:

the other things that she went through,

Dr. Brad Miller:

and how she can be helpful to you.

Dr. Brad Miller:

So you're gonna learn about what it means to live in joy.

Dr. Brad Miller:

You're going to feel the emotion of getting through this

Dr. Brad Miller:

and then on the when we come back

Dr. Brad Miller:

from the other side of the interview.

Dr. Brad Miller:

We're going to talk about some of the specifics

Dr. Brad Miller:

that Kimberly Pippin Schultz talks about

Dr. Brad Miller:

you can do.

Dr. Brad Miller:

This podcast is all about learning

Dr. Brad Miller:

and feeling and doing that.

Dr. Brad Miller:

We hope that you can do just that.

Dr. Brad Miller:

So come back to me.

Dr. Brad Miller:

On the other end of this fascinating conversation

Dr. Brad Miller:

with Kimberly Pittman, Schultz,

Dr. Brad Miller:

she blogs@potel.com

Dr. Brad Miller:

or a book is grieving us:

Dr. Brad Miller:

a field guide for living with loss without losing yourself.

Dr. Brad Miller:

Let's get into our conversation

Dr. Brad Miller:

with Kimberly Pittman Schultz right now.

Dr. Brad Miller:

Kimberly pivot Schultz,

Dr. Brad Miller:

welcome to Beyond adversity.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Thank you so much.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I'm so pleased to be invited

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and to have a chance to talk with you

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Brad and with your listeners.

Dr. Brad Miller:

So great to have you with us here

Dr. Brad Miller:

on Beyond adversity

Dr. Brad Miller:

we really like to deal with

Dr. Brad Miller:

issues that get people stuck

Dr. Brad Miller:

or send them off into a ditch sometimes

Dr. Brad Miller:

and sometimes that's a financial issue

Dr. Brad Miller:

or relationship thing but

Dr. Brad Miller:

one of the things that everybody has to deal with in their family

Dr. Brad Miller:

or in their own life is the end of life is death.

Dr. Brad Miller:

And you help us to do this

Dr. Brad Miller:

and you your your website poet owl.com

Dr. Brad Miller:

helps us to do that

Dr. Brad Miller:

you deal with poetry

Dr. Brad Miller:

and writing other ways that help people deal with grief.

Dr. Brad Miller:

And I know that a little bit learn about you

Dr. Brad Miller:

that this comes out of your own experience

Dr. Brad Miller:

a little bit I really would like to

Dr. Brad Miller:

Hear the origin story of what has impacted your life

Dr. Brad Miller:

in this area, in particularly what has led you

Dr. Brad Miller:

then to create this website

Dr. Brad Miller:

and your books and so on

Dr. Brad Miller:

about grief, tell us your story.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Thank you,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Brad. Yeah, I appreciate it.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Um, and you know, we all have stories,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I know that so many people carry

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

what I call the invisible bag of rocks around things that we live with.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And we grow through,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

as you say, to move forward in our lives.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

My experience, or my dance with loss

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and death started

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

when I was about three and a half

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

where there was a house fire.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And I was saved.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

But my two sisters who were sleeping in the same room

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

with me could not be saved.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And so I learned about loss at a very young age,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and, of course, was very difficult for my parents.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And my mother especially

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

was forever transformed by the experience.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So that was the very,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

so in some ways loss

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

has just sort of been a part of who I am my whole life,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

as you just said,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

as you go through life.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Losses sometimes come in waves.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And certainly there were other losses along the way.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

But I would say another very big period in my life,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

where loss and grief really weighed the most heavily

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

at any time in my life

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

is when my mother died in 2003,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

she had a terminal form

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

of small cell lung cancer,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

so we knew what was coming,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

but you're never really ready when it comes.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And then just two weeks before she died,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

my neighbor and next, my next door neighbor and friend,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

committed suicide,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

actually committed suicide under the tree

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that my kitchen window looks out of,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I did not witness it or anything like that.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

But you can imagine every time I looked at my kitchen window

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

at that tree, that tree took on a very different meaning for me.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And so losing, you know,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

my friend and my mother

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

within two weeks of each other was very difficult.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And I did probably what's the worst thing to do,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Brad, which is,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I felt like I had to just get away like,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I just didn't get that fight or flight feeling.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And so I accepted a very important high level position,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

very demanding position on on a West Coast.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

My husband,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

my husband's originally from the West Coast,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

we were living in Pennsylvania

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

at the time to be closer to my family.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So we moved all the way west to place

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

we'd never lived before

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

we were in Washington State Southwest Washington,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

rather than in California,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

which is where we are now.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And so new job, new home, new location, all new people.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And I'm dealing with the death of my mother

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and the suicide, both of which were pretty heavy-duty losses.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So those those two things in my life as a child

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I hate to think that was midlife then

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

but it was like, less than middle of the day really old.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

You know, those were really big deals for me.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And so it was really that that loss of my mother

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and Bruce was my friend's name,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that had me in a state of grief for a little over two years,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

a very deep grief,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and is what led me to eventually

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

figure my way back into my life

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and to develop what I call my life support system

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

for living with loss that I have since shared with other people,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and went on to write about in the book.

Dr. Brad Miller:

Yeah.

Dr. Brad Miller:

Let me ask you this

Dr. Brad Miller:

about the grief that you have shared?

Dr. Brad Miller:

And would you describe it as debilitating?

Dr. Brad Miller:

What I mean by that

Dr. Brad Miller:

is I've worked with some folks

Dr. Brad Miller:

who really have a hard time functioning,

Dr. Brad Miller:

would you describe it any way that this impacted your just day to day life?

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Absolutely, it did.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I mean, when we think of grief,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

people tend to immediately Imagine your sadness,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

you know, all this sort of those emotions,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

but there's so many emotions,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and there's physical,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I mean, our minds, our spirit,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

our bodies, our emotions,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

they are all tied together.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So if you start, you know,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

steering up one area, it stirs up all the other areas.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So for me, it did reach a point

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

at that I did at some point,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

start looking at someone to one counseling

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and had a you know, a physician

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that wanted to put me on a depression medication.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And I will say there are times

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

grief does go into bonafide clinical depression,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

but I knew in my bones at the time,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that this was unresolved grief,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and not yet depression,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

but it did give me a sense of urgency,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and I just didn't want to stay there forever.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

But yes, it was debilitating.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I, it was very hard for me to sit in meetings,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I was supposed to be leading a team of people.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And I just felt like, who cares?

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I mean, nothing really mattered.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

It just, you know, all of that takes on.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And so, you know,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I actually ended up you know,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

leaving that position

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and taking something less demanding

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

because I had to take care of myself.

Dr. Brad Miller:

Why the reason I asked this

Dr. Brad Miller:

because I have a retired pastor,

Dr. Brad Miller:

and I've been privileged to be

Dr. Brad Miller:

with round folks at the end of life

Dr. Brad Miller:

on many occasions,

Dr. Brad Miller:

but I've also had the experience of

Dr. Brad Miller:

dealing with you know,

Dr. Brad Miller:

folks who've the survivors,

Dr. Brad Miller:

family and so on,

Dr. Brad Miller:

who have on a number occasions

Dr. Brad Miller:

have been debilitated

Dr. Brad Miller:

by just have a hard time functioning.

Dr. Brad Miller:

And I just think it's one of the great adversities

Dr. Brad Miller:

that people face but as you've mentioned,

Dr. Brad Miller:

There has to be a process,

Dr. Brad Miller:

you know, you know,

Dr. Brad Miller:

I grew up studying Elisabeth Kubler Ross,

Dr. Brad Miller:

the five stages of death and dying and so on.

Dr. Brad Miller:

But there has to be stages beyond

Dr. Brad Miller:

that, truly for people to get healthy

Dr. Brad Miller:

beyond that, this we're talking about here.

Dr. Brad Miller:

So I'm interested in now,

Dr. Brad Miller:

Kimberley,

Dr. Brad Miller:

and what happened after the

Dr. Brad Miller:

you've made a decision to change?

Dr. Brad Miller:

You did some things there.

Dr. Brad Miller:

Let's talk for a minute

Dr. Brad Miller:

about the actions or

Dr. Brad Miller:

what you did, to begin to break that pattern

Dr. Brad Miller:

of debilitation to go on to something else.

Dr. Brad Miller:

Talk about what you did.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Yeah,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and I love that you asked that question,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Brad about action,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

because I think

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

when you're in a deep state of grief,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

there are different I mean,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

everybody grieves differently,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that's the most important thing for people to know,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

it's not the same for any two people,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

there are no timelines,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

what works for me may or may not work for others.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

But there are, you know,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

what I've discovered is three general

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

general patterns that people tend to fall in around grief.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And one is what I call the bear Griever,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

or the intuitive Griever.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And that's someone who tends to be really experienced

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

or emotions, tends to want to be very bear like

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and go into a cave and just not come out.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Because that's how you're feeling.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

There's another type I often call the Hummer.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Because there's so much action,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

they just do do do

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

to try to say one step ahead of grief.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And their way of processing it is

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

by doing rather not wanting to really go into the emotion,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

they really want to deal with it by doing.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

But sometimes they do so much that they avoid it.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So they actually doing is really important

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that I know, for me,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

what really helped me was really

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I have to say, by accident,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

there was a little that small voice inside that said,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

there has to be more for me,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I can't believe this is it

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that I'm just like the rest of my life going to feel like this,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I just didn't believe

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that's what my life was meant to be,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

you know, and it just seemed like a not a good use.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

People lost their lives,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I can't waste my life.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Because I feel like I'm living for other people

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

being in a very dark place.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So what happened for me is I discovered,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

you know, really the power of coming back to my own senses

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and my own body and just to the moment.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And it started one evening,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

we were living in southwestern Washington,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and we were fortunate to live

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

on a beautiful stretch of the Louis River East Fork of the Lewis River

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

in one night, just feeling really depressed.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

You know, many times our habits

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and routines will break down when we're grieving.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

But I always made a point of locking all the doors before I went to bed.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And this one night,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I decided to wander out to the river.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And I just wandered out there and I just stood by the river.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And I didn't do anything

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I just listened, I listened to the sound of the water over the rocks,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

which actually sound a little bit like voices

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

coming from the upstream,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

but really was just the sound of the water moving through the rocks,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I could hear tree shifting birds,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

maybe shifting in the roofs,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I could feel the the moisture in the air on my arm.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And then I turned and just kind of came back.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

It wasn't very long, just a matter of moments.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

But as I was heading back to the house,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

what I realized Brad is in that brief moment,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I had taken a break from grief,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I had taken a break.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And that was a big aha moment for me.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And so I realized,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

if this could happen by accident,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I could be intentional about it.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And so I began to create

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

what I call a tiny comeback to your senses ritual in the evening.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And then in the morning,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and I made it very intentional acts

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

of starting with just three minutes

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

because when you're really grieving,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

you know, you don't have a lot of you have this emotional inertia.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And so that was the initial doing for me

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

was just to create these grief breaks

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

by trying to calm myself down and be in the moment

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and really paying attention to what's happening inside me

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and what's around me.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And it became an opening for me to

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

then do other things that would help me get better.

Dr. Brad Miller:

And it's interesting that you say

Dr. Brad Miller:

that you had to be very intentional

Dr. Brad Miller:

about taking those breaks,

Dr. Brad Miller:

you might call them just kind of

Dr. Brad Miller:

having a whiff or just sense of joy,

Dr. Brad Miller:

even in the midst of this over

Dr. Brad Miller:

with sometimes overwhelming sadness, of grief,

Dr. Brad Miller:

but you chose joy in life over,

Dr. Brad Miller:

you know, kind of the darkness of, of sadness.

Dr. Brad Miller:

And that makes all the difference.

Dr. Brad Miller:

And you begin to process that through

Dr. Brad Miller:

your process here. Now, when we talk about death

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

It does make all the difference.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

It does.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

You have to first believe something better.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I've worked with so many people over the years.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And there are times where either people

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

where people really don't believe

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

like they really don't believe something,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

oh, my beloved is gone.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And that can be a person can sometimes be an animal companion.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

That was such a big part of their daily life

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

because there's the dailiness of loving somebody.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And if you don't believe something else is possible,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

then it really actually is going to be hard.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And then there are people

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I've run into some people

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

where they even acknowledge it as a choice.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I don't want to be happy my son is gone

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

or I don't want to be happy.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

My you know, and that.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So part of it does start with the belief

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that something's possible for you

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that's better than where you're at

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and then deciding to move in the direction of that belief.

Dr. Brad Miller:

I truly believe that some people

Dr. Brad Miller:

choose their misery as where they choose to remain?

Dr. Brad Miller:

somewhat comforted what they know their miserableness,

Dr. Brad Miller:

rather than choosing to break out of that.

Dr. Brad Miller:

And as the choices we're talking about here

Dr. Brad Miller:

that you're doing this and moving forward,

Dr. Brad Miller:

let's talk about relationships for a second here,

Dr. Brad Miller:

Kimberly, how in the process of grieving

Dr. Brad Miller:

how relationships can be wonderful

Dr. Brad Miller:

and helpful, and sometimes not so much.

Dr. Brad Miller:

But tell us about how about relationships?

Dr. Brad Miller:

How, you know, sometimes folks will,

Dr. Brad Miller:

in a time of grief, you know,

Dr. Brad Miller:

say something like, you know,

Dr. Brad Miller:

how can I help them be so nice,

Dr. Brad Miller:

we'll say the wrong thing, but oftentimes,

Dr. Brad Miller:

their presence is helpful.

Dr. Brad Miller:

But tell us about the power

Dr. Brad Miller:

and the role of positive relationships.

Dr. Brad Miller:

In the grieving process.

Dr. Brad Miller:

It could be a family member,

Dr. Brad Miller:

it could be a mentor, it could be a coworker,

Dr. Brad Miller:

it could be you know,

Dr. Brad Miller:

so a book you read years ago,

Dr. Brad Miller:

or poetry or something like this,

Dr. Brad Miller:

tell us about the role of relationships?

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Well, in the end,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

the fact that we even grieve

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

is all about relationships, right.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And if we didn't watch somebody, it wouldn't matter

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I mean, so it's really kind of love small

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that we're feeling so awful when we lose somebody,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

but the relationship piece is so powerful,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Brad, because sometimes the people around us

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

really want to support us.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And sometimes they'll say dumb things.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And what I usually say to myself

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and to others is, because sometimes people get really hung up

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

on additionally hurting, like, they'll be so angry

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that somebody said that or so hurt

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that somebody didn't know better

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

to not say something,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that that just compounds their grief

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

to get caught up in what somebody else couldn't do.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And then there are very real situations

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

where the people around us,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

for whatever reason,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

can't really support us in the way that we want or need.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And that's where I say, look beyond the immediate people,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

you know, if I was just talking to someone yesterday,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

whose spouse is having a hard time supporting her,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

as she's grieving the loss of her mother,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

her mother was very close to her,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

they had a conflicted relationship.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And her husband doesn't understand

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

why she's grieving so much,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

since it was not the easiest relationship.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And probably part of the reason is

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

because it wasn't the easiest relationship.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So she's dealing with a lot of regrets and memories.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So you know, what I said to her is,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

you know, look beyond,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I know, as a child,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

where I could not really talk with my parents

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

or family about my loss.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

There were school teachers, there was a grandparent,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and now in this virtual age,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

we can hate this virtual technology at times.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

But it allows us to connect in circles

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

with people that are on similar paths around

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

so this morning, I was facilitating,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I have a workshop that I've started teaching around,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

biting Joy into grief.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And, you know, I was working with people

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that were in completely different parts of the country.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And yet we could come to support each other.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So the relationships are important.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And if you don't have them,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

immediately near you, then begin to look at where else you might find that support.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And then I will also say to parents, in particular,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

there's a tendency to feel like, I've got to be strong,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and you know, for my children,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and there's some degree to which you know,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

you want to help your children,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

you know, but I really would encourage people

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

to realize grieving doesn't mean you're not strong,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

you know, sometimes you need to let people know,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and ask for the help,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

sometimes people don't know what you want.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And you just need to really say

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I need this kind of support.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And so to remember to just let people know.

Dr. Brad Miller:

So there's vulnerability

Dr. Brad Miller:

is a critical healing, healing force there.

Dr. Brad Miller:

Let's just keep going with this for a second.

Dr. Brad Miller:

It was just in terms of practical advice,

Dr. Brad Miller:

you know, I deal with this quite a bit.

Dr. Brad Miller:

And when I've dealt with people in lost,

Dr. Brad Miller:

some will say, Oh, well, what do I say?

Dr. Brad Miller:

What do I do I have to go to the,

Dr. Brad Miller:

you know, I have to go to the funeral home

Dr. Brad Miller:

or whatever it is, I have to I want that I need to be supportive.

Dr. Brad Miller:

Nobody just thoughts of our,

Dr. Brad Miller:

or guidance for any persons

Dr. Brad Miller:

about how they can be a good person

Dr. Brad Miller:

to be a support for those who are grieving.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Yeah, and you know, what I would say I

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

s there there are a whole books written out there on this topic.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And as I've worked with people over the years,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

sometimes someone will say never,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

they no one should ever say that to me.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And someone else will say,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

How come no one ever said that to me.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And so I will say, there's no one phrase or word that's absolutely 100% Right,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

or absolutely 100%. Wrong.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I think the most difficult and most important thing

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

is to actually try to be there for someone

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

sometimes we get so worried about what to say or not to say

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that we don't show up,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and that hurts people even more

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

because they don't understand it.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So I would say risk saying it

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

but I think there are some simple things.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

If you don't know someone's faith orientation,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

some people may find it very helpful to say

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

they're in a better place or as part of a plan for them.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

For other people that don't hold those belief systems

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that can be really upsetting to them.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So I would just say try to not make assumptions

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

about those kinds of things,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I think very often will say to people

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

well if you need any help, just let me know

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

what when people are grieving.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

When people are grieving, they're generally not going to reach out,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

they may not even know what they need.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And it's awkward to ask all those sorts of things,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

even the energy, the physical stamina to do it.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

A better way of saying that is,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

if you know, are you able to get supper,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I'd be happy to bring you a casserole on Tuesday.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So actually try to think about watch

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

what's going on in that person's life

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and think about, you know, how you can help still offer,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I think the most important thing I say to people is

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

because there's also a tendency to want to help

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

or even try to fix or make it all better.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So I would certainly say, you know,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

often that's not what people need,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

you know, you can't really fix it for them.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Sometimes people just need to have their grief witnessed

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

to have what they're feeling acknowledge.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And so sometimes it's not saying a darn thing.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And if you are going to offer advice,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

or you hear someone struggling,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

instead of immediately jumping in with what worked for me,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

or what work with my best friend's mother's second cousin,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

is to say, I have some thoughts about that.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Would you like a suggestion?

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Always ask first, do they want some ideas,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

because at the moment,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that may not be what they want at all,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

they just want you to sit in here

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and witness and, and just be a supportive presence in their pain.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So sometimes the best thing to say is nothing.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And then this idea of be strong. Boy, I'd like to bound that one.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

That's what I like to ban just because it says two things to a grieving person.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

It says, Don't burden me,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I don't want you to fall apart in front of me,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I can handle it.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So I need you to be strong, right?

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

That's one of the messages that you're sending to somebody.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And then it does send the message

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that somehow if you cry,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

or you're vulnerable, as you just said that that's a weakness,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and it is not. It's a humaneness.

Dr. Brad Miller:

Yeah, to acknowledge and affirm one's grief.

Dr. Brad Miller:

And to you know, fix kept that process,

Dr. Brad Miller:

you just can't turn it off,

Dr. Brad Miller:

you know, not like a snap of fingers,

Dr. Brad Miller:

you're going to get through,

Dr. Brad Miller:

you touched on something here.

Dr. Brad Miller:

Kimberly, I really want to us to touch on

Dr. Brad Miller:

you mentioned about how it relates to people,

Dr. Brad Miller:

sometimes you need to be aware about their,

Dr. Brad Miller:

your faith orientation,

Dr. Brad Miller:

I just don't think we can talk about death

Dr. Brad Miller:

and dying and grief without touching on

Dr. Brad Miller:

the element of spirituality or faith or whatever one's orientation is that way?

Dr. Brad Miller:

And what role do you think that having a faith orientation

Dr. Brad Miller:

or somehow connecting to something greater than self,

Dr. Brad Miller:

the spiritual direction,

Dr. Brad Miller:

Christianity, Judaism, Islam, any, you know,

Dr. Brad Miller:

established religion or some other thing?

Dr. Brad Miller:

What role does that play

Dr. Brad Miller:

in our own personal process of grieving,

Dr. Brad Miller:

and or how we relate to others.

Dr. Brad Miller:

So talk a little bit about the spiritual element of grief and death.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I think it's an important topic,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and one that's hard for people to talk about.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I have my own personal belief,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

but I also have what I've observed over time,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and I will say,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

my experience is that

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

most people have some belief system of something bigger

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

or beyond themselves.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I certainly know people that have been atheists or agnostics.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

My observation is that,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

in general, people that have some belief in something bigger

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

than themselves, tend to find their way a little bit better,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and maybe a little bit sooner,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

but not always. I do feel that for me personally,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

believing that there's something more.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And you know, after the lot and having a loss at such a young age,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and not being able to talk about it for many years

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

through actually go back into elementary school,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

through high school and college,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I was something of a spiritual seeker,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and I read about all different kinds of faiths.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And I kind of came to the conclusion for me personally,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

this is just me that almost,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

you know, whether you're talking about indigenous people

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and their belief systems,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

or you're talking about a major world religion,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

they often ask, are you talking about quantum mechanics?

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Frankly, they tend to lead you back to the same question

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

about how is it that we're here if you believe in the Big Bang,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

to me, that does not have any conflict with believing in God

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

because as far as we know,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

the big bang could be God snapping his hand

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

or her hands together, saying, well, let's get started.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

You know, I don't really know what it is.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

We don't know what was there before.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So I think spirituality and feeling that you're part of something bigger

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and just feeling interconnected to other people as well as other beings

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and we are energy so much of who we are as energy

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

is a very real physical thing,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I think can help people get out of their own pain a little bit,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

to see possibility I think if you're,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

if it's hard to feel,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

because I think when you believe in something spiritual

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

or have some faith that connects you to something larger,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

it's very easy to get stuck in your own pain

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and not realize that there is more for you.

Dr. Brad Miller:

You know,

Dr. Brad Miller:

the tragic piece of the transformation piece

Dr. Brad Miller:

I believe, is not being so self-absorbed

Dr. Brad Miller:

that you are not able to connect up with either other people

Dr. Brad Miller:

or understand that for many of us something greater than ourselves.

Dr. Brad Miller:

Spirituality is something is a resource for healing and transformation.

Dr. Brad Miller:

Yeah, speaking of resources for healing or transformation,

Dr. Brad Miller:

you've got a book that's helpful to people,

Dr. Brad Miller:

and you're a poet.

Dr. Brad Miller:

And I'd really like to speak for a few minutes here.

Dr. Brad Miller:

Now, Kimberly, about process,

Dr. Brad Miller:

about habits, rituals, writing, journaling, poetry,

Dr. Brad Miller:

anything else people can do to help them

Dr. Brad Miller:

and you got a number of things I know you mentioned in your book.

Dr. Brad Miller:

But tell us a little bit about this.

Dr. Brad Miller:

You call it a field guide,

Dr. Brad Miller:

I'm really interested in that terminology,

Dr. Brad Miller:

a field guide for living with loss, then tell us about

Dr. Brad Miller:

just some of the some tips

Dr. Brad Miller:

or some tracks that people can go on

Dr. Brad Miller:

to be helped them to deal with grief.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Certainly.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Well, the reason I decided to call it a field guide

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

is because I feel like when we're in,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

especially in the depths of grief,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

in the early raw stages of grief,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

it is like we've landed in a new planet,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and we're trying to find our way forward.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And we don't even know what it is.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I mean, grief is such a kaleidoscope of emotions,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and it can look like anger, it can look like anxiety.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I mean, when you

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

in I book I'd point out, you know,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

almost any death is really three deaths.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Because when we lose somebody, we love

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

it, you just can't help reflect on your own mortality

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and the fact that someday you're not going to exist.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And then there's that relationship

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that existed between you that's forever changed.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Because while you can bring that person with you

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and your life forward,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

it's in a different way,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

because they're not physically here.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So that's a little bit of why I say

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Field Guide is to help people understand what it is

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that what you may not think of as grief is grief.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

In many ways. It takes shape.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

But also because for me,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

sensory healing has been such an important part of that process.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And being having that sense of place and purpose.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So very specific practices is taking that idea of a tiny comeback,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

your senses ritual, or a little ritual.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

When you're grieving, many habits get broken.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And when you lose someone in your life,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I was just talking with several people

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

who've lost lifelong spouses and companions,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

your actual daily rhythm and routine,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

if you always made lunch for somebody,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

or you always called, you know, your significant other at lunch,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

all those things, now you have these empty spaces

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that can suddenly become grief holes.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So what I talk about is

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

using those moments to really pay attention,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

starting with just one sense, it could be your sense of smell or hearing

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

or your vision, often we use our eyes.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So I often encourage people to really focus on a sense

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that they don't usually use,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

because it opens up things that have always been there.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

But we've never seen because we're focused elsewhere.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So one practice is to find a part of your rhythm

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

like that night for me, at the river,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I always locked the door.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Now in my life, I mean,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I always make a cup of tea, I mean,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

the, you know, the world could be on fire,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

which sometimes is here in California where I live,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

but I'm still gonna have a cup of tea in the morning.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So I so building something on that,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

when you get this sort of emotional inertia

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

where you just can't get out of bed,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

or you just can't move forward,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

you just can't do something that's kind of be supportive of you,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

taking that time with a cup of tea to like fully experience it,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

What's it smell like,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

look at the way the steam rises up out of the cup,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

to just really get focused on those little tiny details

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

of something that simple and basic and ordinary.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And what you find is it calms you physically,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

it calms you mentally.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And then frankly, spiritually, you just start to feel more connected to yourself.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And to the moment and to the very life force,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

you know, your very own breathing is the most basic thing you could do

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

is just to pay attention to your breathing, right?

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Because that is what makes you here.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So I encourage people to do that.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And I do encourage people,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

we talked about, you know, taking actions.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And so I also talk about joy habits very often,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

when people have a loss,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

they their habits fall apart.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So things that they used to love doing

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

or things that they did with their beloved other

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

they aren't doing

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

so I encourage people if they're things that you just stopped doing,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

how can we go from that little sensory ritual

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that takes a break and make that break and grief you feel okay,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

you might feel thrilled or wonderful that you feel okay in the moment

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that you're calm. To then use that time to step into doing something

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that brings you joy, and that could be meditation,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

it could be going for a run,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

it could be making food.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

It could be I know a woman that was all about her sourdough starter

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and you have to tend that on a regular basis

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

to keep going right.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

It could be a woodworker where you're going out

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and carving but finding that thing that brings you some sense of joy

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that will not only sustain you in that moment,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

but it will carry you through further into your day.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So really, you know getting yourself in the potential

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

not just doing for the sake of distraction

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and saying so busy you think you can put grief away

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

but really doing in a way that brings you in

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and it may even as you do this,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

it may even open up more emotion,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

but then that's a way of helping you work through that emotion too.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Whatever is gonna come next in your life.

Dr. Brad Miller:

What I love about your sharing here,

Dr. Brad Miller:

Kimberly has some really practical stuff to do.

Dr. Brad Miller:

It's not just emotional only, it's the physical

Dr. Brad Miller:

and the other things that connect up to the emotion,

Dr. Brad Miller:

and to the spiritual and to the interpersonal.

Dr. Brad Miller:

And that's, that's great.

Dr. Brad Miller:

And that's why it's a field guide,

Dr. Brad Miller:

a field guide to grieve in us.

Dr. Brad Miller:

What just one more thing for you,

Dr. Brad Miller:

then we'll conclude our conversation

Dr. Brad Miller:

that has to do with,

Dr. Brad Miller:

you've been working with a lot of folks here

Dr. Brad Miller:

and folks are reading your book,

Dr. Brad Miller:

and they're going through your workshops, and so on.

Dr. Brad Miller:

Really like for you to share with me a episode

Dr. Brad Miller:

or kind of a testimonial about a person

Dr. Brad Miller:

or situation that you've worked with

Dr. Brad Miller:

that you've really seen a dramatic transformation from,

Dr. Brad Miller:

from, you know, wherever they were at,

Dr. Brad Miller:

in their grief to a better place,

Dr. Brad Miller:

you know, to give you names, of course,

Dr. Brad Miller:

but just tell us about story about someone you've worked with

Dr. Brad Miller:

who's had had a transformation.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Oh, my gosh,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

there's been so many people over the years.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And I do always honor their.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

In my book, I changed most of the names

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

or a few names that I did not change.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

But most of the names are changed in details

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

just to protect the privacy of people

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and their private grief.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

But one of the stories very funny,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I'm not sure if that's the best one to share.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

But I can think of I think one of the things I will

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I will mention is there was a professor that I worked with,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

at one point who's 20 Something child was killed by a drunk driver.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And he was the type of person

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that was very pragmatic about things after a brief grief period,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

taking a little time off from his teaching for a few weeks,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

you know, he came back into teaching

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and things were going really pretty well.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And then, you know, he started having problems.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And so we were sitting one day, having a cup of tea or lunch,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I can't remember exactly what

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and so I just asked him a little bit more to unpack it,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

but really didn't know that much.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I really didn't know him that well, or, or his situation.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And he and his son had always had this,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

this practice on Thursdays,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

starting when his son was a teenager,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and then continuing until even after he moved out of the house.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And up until the time he was killed by this drunk driver

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and the practice son had become a born again, Christian.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And so they would have these conversations

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and this faculty member was very much science oriented

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and very evolution oriented.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And they would have these discussions every Thursday night

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

about, you know, their son would go to a Bible study

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and come back and they have this conversation.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And I'd have these little debates.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And sometimes they would end beautifully.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

They have a glass of milk, have these conversations.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And other times, they would have been very upset and angry

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and go to bed angry at each other.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And the last one of these conversations they had

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

was one of these difficult conversations did not end well.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So you can imagine the regret this man was experiencing.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So whenever Thursday nights,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I think it was Thursday, maybe it was a Tuesday,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

but whatever that night was they did this,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

you know, his wife was very good about

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

eventually shaping that into a date night.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Right? So that went through.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So those things shifted, but he was still struggling with,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

you know, what was happening.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And he started having a student challenge him in classroom

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

about he encouraged debate.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

You could you could put anything out there that you want to

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

but you had to be able to back it up,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

you know, with facts and observations and scientific methodology.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And this one student was really challenging

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and most challenging around this idea of evolution,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and creationism. Long story short,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Brad, you know, I suggested some practices

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and he was just he just really wonderfully

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

when the student would stand up or raise his hand,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

he just he said, I've never been like that.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And I saw I encouraged him to do

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

was to go into what that emotion was

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and stop trying to process it with his brain.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

But what was the feeling like physically feeling

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

when this young man, I think it was a male student

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

was sort of challenging him with these questions.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And it did lead him to do some self reflection,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

he admitted he'd never been particularly self reflected to him

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that was just navel gazing as he put it,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

but I saw him later on.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And he said, and it was just so such an aha moment for me too.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And he said, you know,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I realized I have all these regrets

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

about what my son and I didn't say to each other.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

He said, but it dawned on me, Kimberly,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that there was something I missed in all those conversations

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

over all those years.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And I was like, what is that and he goes,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

my son was trying to save me.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I was so busy debating him

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and doing my scientific methodology.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I think my son was trying to save his old man.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And it was such a poignant moment.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

But it was it was taking him

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

making him sort of encouraging him

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

to just stop and literally pay attention

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

to what he was physically feeling his body

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

because he'd get knotted up

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and headachy and this fight or flight,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

his tendency to just want to flee the classroom

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and his emotions and just getting him back to paying attention

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and thinking through that.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I don't get credit for it,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

but I think It helped him to have that aha moment.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And it's so much shifted for him in that moment.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And his ability to deal with this deal with this teaching

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and to really bring an whole level of empathy

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

to the student that had become almost a fear factor for him,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

became a very powerful just doing that.

Dr. Brad Miller:

Yeah, an aha moment,

Dr. Brad Miller:

a moment of clarification

Dr. Brad Miller:

and appreciation of the Son.

Dr. Brad Miller:

And hopefully that can then no longer be focused

Dr. Brad Miller:

on the, the pain part,

Dr. Brad Miller:

but focus on the productivity,

Dr. Brad Miller:

the good things that came about it,

Dr. Brad Miller:

and that's awesome.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

But you get the beauty

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and depth of the relationship. Yeah,

Dr. Brad Miller:

That's awesome.

Dr. Brad Miller:

And beauty and depth of relationship

Dr. Brad Miller:

is what you're about and helping people to deal with grief.

Dr. Brad Miller:

And you've got a lot of great,

Dr. Brad Miller:

great insights here, Kimberly.

Dr. Brad Miller:

And how can folks avail themselves

Dr. Brad Miller:

of what you have to offer

Dr. Brad Miller:

tell us about how people

Dr. Brad Miller:

get connected with you

Dr. Brad Miller:

if they have a need in their life

Dr. Brad Miller:

that you can speak to?

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Right? Well, my poet, my,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

my website is poet owl.com.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Just like the two words poet and owl together,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

poet owl.com.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And I will set up a landing page for your listeners,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Brad, it'll be poet l.com.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And then I'll just have adversity

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

as the backslash

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

so that if people come to that site, they'll see

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

the, you know, they'll see your cover.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And you know,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

going to someone's house for the first time

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

you want something familiar, you know,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

there's a familiar face there.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

So I will do that.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

My book, of course, can be found wherever you can buy books,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I encourage people to use their local booksellers.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

Because we want to support our local booksellers as well,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

they can order the book.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And then on my website,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

there's information about the workshop

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that I teach, as well as a number of free resources

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

that people can find to support them in their loss journey.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And of course, I do hope that this conversation today

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

offers at least a few ideas

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

for your listeners that will be helpful to them

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

on their own personal journey with loss.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I like to say, you know,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

loss comes along and breaks our heart

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and then loss comes along with us for the rest of our lives.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

But I truly believe grief

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

does not have to be always there all the time.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

It can be title, like the ocean where it comes and goes.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

But if anyone feels like it's here forever,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and things can never get better.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I'm just here to say, if you believe that there's more for you.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And I say there is

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

I really feel there is more for you.

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

And then, you know,

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

do keep going forward

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

do move forward in that journey

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and look for the resources

Kimberley Pittman Schulz:

and the people that can support you.

Dr. Brad Miller:

One of the great resources we have

Dr. Brad Miller:

and what a great way to bring our conversation

Dr. Brad Miller:

to close is through the book

Dr. Brad Miller:

greediness The Field Guide for living with loss

Dr. Brad Miller:

without losing yourself.

Dr. Brad Miller:

And our guest today is Kimberly Pittman Schultz,

Dr. Brad Miller:

the author of that book

Dr. Brad Miller:

and we'll put connections to everything we've talked about here,

Dr. Brad Miller:

her website and so on and her books at Dr. Brad miller.com.

Dr. Brad Miller:

Thank you for being our guest today

Dr. Brad Miller:

on beyond adverse with Dr. Brad Miller.

Dr. Brad Miller:

Kimberly Pittman Schultz, thank you for being our guest.

Dr. Brad Miller:

This is a delightful person for me to talk to

Dr. Brad Miller:

Kimberly Pittman Schultz,

Dr. Brad Miller:

I think you saw her tenderness in her care

Dr. Brad Miller:

her compassion for folks who go through loss

Dr. Brad Miller:

go through grief and all of us do at one time or another.

Dr. Brad Miller:

When you can't avoid it.

Dr. Brad Miller:

I know I've had in my life

Dr. Brad Miller:

I've lost a grandparents on my own father and,

Dr. Brad Miller:

and I remember one time of deep grief

Dr. Brad Miller:

that I had when I lost a dog.

Dr. Brad Miller:

And she died on Christmas Day.

Dr. Brad Miller:

And December that beat a time of deep grief

Dr. Brad Miller:

because I was trying to hold out to get her through Christmas

Dr. Brad Miller:

and just didn't make it.

Dr. Brad Miller:

These emotional moments come to us.

Dr. Brad Miller:

When we have these times of loss in our life.

Dr. Brad Miller:

Kimberly's book is about a field guide.

Dr. Brad Miller:

It's called it the subtitle is a field guide for living with loss

Dr. Brad Miller:

without losing yourself, grieving us learning how to do this.

Dr. Brad Miller:

So let's talk about what you can do.

Dr. Brad Miller:

We talked a little bit in the front end of our conversation

Dr. Brad Miller:

about learning a little bit about her process,

Dr. Brad Miller:

about being mindful and about knowing that there is a sense

Dr. Brad Miller:

that grief and joy are not opposites.

Dr. Brad Miller:

And we we felt her story and we feel the emotion of grief.

Dr. Brad Miller:

But I think there are some unique things

Dr. Brad Miller:

that she teaches Kimberly Pittman Schultz

Dr. Brad Miller:

teaches that can be helpful to us.

Dr. Brad Miller:

Here's what some of them are, as she calls them.

Dr. Brad Miller:

Tiny come back to your senses or rituals.

Dr. Brad Miller:

These are processes and habits we can learn to return to joy

Dr. Brad Miller:

and return to healthy habits.

Dr. Brad Miller:

One of the things that she does

Dr. Brad Miller:

to process things and help teaches others to do

Dr. Brad Miller:

is writing poetry specifically,

Dr. Brad Miller:

and you can go and go to her website and her books.

Dr. Brad Miller:

Many of them are about poetry

Dr. Brad Miller:

and about writing about processing things.

Dr. Brad Miller:

The idea is to give yourself new practices,

Dr. Brad Miller:

new ways to navigate through your,

Dr. Brad Miller:

through your grief and to come up

Dr. Brad Miller:

with new ways to interview

Dr. Brad Miller:

to understand your grieving as a healing process.

Dr. Brad Miller:

Great stuff, go to her website poet owl.com

Dr. Brad Miller:

are named Kimberly Tedman Schultz.

Dr. Brad Miller:

My name is Dr. Brad Miller.

Dr. Brad Miller:

I come to you with a background in ministry

Dr. Brad Miller:

and in transformational leadership.

Dr. Brad Miller:

And I come to you with a passion

Dr. Brad Miller:

for helping people like you

Dr. Brad Miller:

to navigate through adverse life conditions,

Dr. Brad Miller:

and to grow through what you go through

Dr. Brad Miller:

and to come through

Dr. Brad Miller:

to a life of peace, prosperity, and purpose.

Dr. Brad Miller:

We hope you go to our website, Dr. Brad miller.com.

Dr. Brad Miller:

We'll have links to all the stuff about Kimberly Pittman, Schultz

Dr. Brad Miller:

and other opportunities to connect with over 170 podcast episodes,

Dr. Brad Miller:

where we deal with matters of depression,

Dr. Brad Miller:

divorce, disease, debt, and death

Dr. Brad Miller:

and help you to navigate those to crush adversity

Dr. Brad Miller:

and come out to a better place.

Dr. Brad Miller:

We hope that you'll join us next time here on Beyond adversity.

Dr. Brad Miller:

We'll have another great yes

Dr. Brad Miller:

and other great teaching,

Dr. Brad Miller:

but to help you to grow through what you go through.

Dr. Brad Miller:

So till next time, good people,

Dr. Brad Miller:

I just want to commend you

Dr. Brad Miller:

and continue to encourage you

Dr. Brad Miller:

to always do all the good that you can do.

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