The Gift of Music


By Christine MacLean A note from Karen Mulder: Christine shared this story with me during one of my speaking engagements at my home church, Hope Church in Holland, Michigan. It’s a lovely story about how one man’s love of music united a group of people to engage in a generous act of caregiving. My dad […]

My Loved One Has Aphasia. How Can I Help?


Guest post by Ted Baxter If your loved one has aphasia, your means of communication with them has been drastically altered.  It can be very frustrating (indeed, heartbreaking in some cases) to watch as a family member or friend tries valiantly to communicate even the simplest of messages. As a stroke survivor (which occurred when […]

I Had a Stroke at Age 41. Here’s How My Friends and Family Helped Me Recover

Guest Post by Ted Baxter In 2005, I was at the top of my game-a successful business man in peak physical condition. I spent my workdays traveling the globe as a financial services executive. Then, at age 41, with no warning signs whatsoever, I had a massive ischemic stroke. The doctors feared I wouldn’t survive. […]

Bring a Touch of Home to Someone in the Hospital


How can you make someone’s hospital stay more pleasant? Ted Baxter was 41 years old when he suffered a massive stroke. During his long recuperation Ted grew weary of the hospital’s antiseptic surroundings. One day, Ted’s wife Kelly brought some shampoo from home and helped Ted wash his hair. [Related: Caregiving Tips for Visiting a […]

How to Help Your Teen Cope with Grief


Tears spilled gently from my eyes as I watched my 19-year-old daughter triumphantly cross the finish line of her first marathon. The emotions that whirled around in my head were so mixed: proud of her accomplishment but sad by what had prompted it and what it had come to mean. Six months earlier my husband […]

How to Communicate with a Friend Who Has Had a Stroke


How does one communicate with a friend who has had a stroke and has limited conversational ability? That’s been on my mind ever since my good friend Ginger had a stroke three months ago. Ginger has Wernicke’s Aphasia which means she has damage in the areas of her brain that processes the meaning of words […]

How Do You Comfort a Child Whose Pet Died?


When my granddaughter Anna’s dog Inky was killed, she was heartbroken. I immediately reached out to Anna to provide support. I also wanted to surround her with supportive words from fellow dog-loving family members, so I sent a text to my sister Loretta. What transpired is conversation that unfolded between the two of them that […]

When Someone’s Spouse Dies By Suicide


How will you show support in the midst of a loved one’s grief? When someone’s spouse dies by suicide, it’s difficult to know how to help. Here’s one person’s story of pain and how she worked through the grief process: “At approximately 2:00 p.m. on November 2, 1993, my husband took his own life.”  The […]

What to Say to a Child Who is Reluctant to Go Back to School


Guest post by Cindi Reynolds Do you know a child who is reluctant to go back to school after a break? As an elementary school counselor, I’ve found that transition times are hardest for school-aged kids. For example, Monday mornings, the day after a school break, or the beginning of a new school year are […]

Coping Tips for When Your Child Leaves for College

Guest Post by Sherri Maat Is your child leaving for college for the first time? How are you coping? As a parent of two boys, we sent our eldest off to college a couple of years ago. I’m here to tell you that it was a huge transition for everyone involved. My son Hunter attends […]

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