From the Mentor's Notebook on Personal Growth Issues

Rejoice with those who rejoice and weep with those who weep.
blue daisies

Mentor's Notebook: Lynne's Story -    "My Journey About losing Cindy"  Facing Grief and Loss

beachEven as I sit here at the beach, I stare at the newspaper clippings, trying to make sense of the story.  They tell me even this fogginess is part of the Grief process. They say this also will pass .... but somehow, I wonder ....

You see stories all the time about children getting lost, kidnapped or worse yet, killed in some accident ... but you never think it will happen to you. 

My mind is still a blur with all the events of that week.  We were at our usual Sunday church gathering, in our the usual  seats.  The three children were off with their favourite Sunday School teachers and all seemed right with the world.  We were enjoying the music, although not particularly tuned into the words.  I was thinking more about the family lunch with my in-laws than focusing on the words , or the Pastor's message that followed.

As my husband and our two older children gathered after the service, we began to wonder "Where is Cindy?'  Sure, she 's a sociable child, always chatting with others and the neighbour's children.  So maybe she was there ... or with her cousins ..... and had forgotten the time?

Around 1:00 after church, we started to worry and began an somewhat panicky search.  Around 1:30 pm, we had the few remaining people alerted to our missing daughter and the real search began.  People organised themselves and went out looking around the buildings and car park.

 The helpful Police were called in around 2:00 pm, along with many other volunteers.  It was becoming quite obvious that our angel Cindy wasn't just visiting with another group next door.  I began to fear and prepare for the worst.

I've tried to tell her story through the newspaper clippings I collected then.  Otherwise, the details become too gruesome and my heart bleeds more.

lynne's newspaper

 They called out the dogs around 5:30, knowing even then that the search might end with a gruesome discovery.  Still we and others prayed.

 In the end, they only found a little red hair ribbon that was Cindy's and one of her shoes.... nothing else - no body, no villain .... and no Cindy.

 'Oh, God  how do we tell our other children?"   How can we handle this overwhelming powerlessness?  Why?  How?  Who?' 

It's been four long months now.  We have good meaning people tell us "Try and put it behind you.  At least you have two other children."   .... and other similar, less than helpful or in fact insulting things. 

Sometimes I wish they would all go away and let the world collapse around me .... but I must be strong for the children and for my husband......

Books and helpful counsellors tell me 'Anger is a normal part of this grief nightmare'.  "If only ... or What if .... " often leave me drained and feeling useless.  There's dinner to be fixed and the washing to be done ... and school has started back again.

The world doesn't seem to care any more.  "Life goes on ..." but for me ... no, my world fell apart on that Sunday when Cindy was lost! 

To be honest with you, some days ,I still struggle with my concepts of 'a good God'!  How ... yes, how could He allow something like this to happen? 
I try to write down my thoughts, only to see them scattered through my tears.   I wonder ...... where is she right now?  I could torment my mind and heart to death with those thoughts ... but I try not to.  Somewhere ....God knows where ......

The emotional outpouring in the wake of Cindy's disappearance has been very overwhelming.  We hope that the incident reminds all parents that their children are precious and irreplaceable.

We may never know what has happened to her or understand the reasons why.  Even if you believe in a good God, that doesn't mean you will never know the pains of life. 

It's a cruel world we live in - with or without Him.  I am learning though that having a faith, a conviction - that there is a good God - has become the lifeline to get me through ...on most days.  I've learned to see Him in ways that I wouldn't have even noticed two years ago.

I know we will survive this terrible experience and maybe even learn something that will help others in their grief nightmare. 

....  So until then , don't tell me to "... just be brave, you're lucky to have the other two children ... or to just forgive!"I'm not there yet! 

I have written these notes to help others go through their Grief and Loss Journey.  May you find comfort in the God of all comfort!


PS. This is the picture I have been given of where Cindy is now, and it's a peaceful rest for my heart.

lynne's blue daisies



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Here is another great site:
which deals with many of the underlying truths about forgiveness and letting God bring healing.

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  • Other Recommended Resources:

Also Try Google: "Christian Grief & Loss + groups" or "Christian Grief & Loss + sites"

  • Books as Resources:

Dark Threads the Weaver Needs by Lockyer, Fleming H. Revell Pub. ISBN 0-8007-5588-x

Is that Really You, God?  by Lauren Cunningham, YWAM Pub.    ISBN 0-92754-522-5

From the Mentor's Notebook, August/October Edition, Page 4

  About Us  Stories to Share    Allie's Story
happy 1 Lynne's Journey
 Ben's Search  Reports & eBooks Disclaimer Page    Summary - October Edition
Nicho's story        Sally's Story Patricia's Story

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  • bullet-note  Comments from the Mentor's Notebook: 
  • How do we help others faced with their deep grief and loss issues?

We have only just scratched the surface for this topic.  There were so many other sections we could have added in helping Lynne and the family with this unresolved loss.

Their path was one of the hardest areas to face in the journey toward healing - when there is no body. Needing a closure, the family designed a special service to celebrate Cindy's life and to say their goodbyes.

Even today, the oldest of Lynne's sisters, Janice, looks for her in the faces of children, in the sounds of a crowd.  Hope still hangs on even though the years have passed.

familyof3 in shadow



As their Counsellor/Mentor, my heart cried with them.  We tracked with the whole family for 2 years, being the friends and a stable rock that was needed. 

 Eventually, all the family renewed the Faith that had kept them through this deepest storm.  However, it was a faith that was changed from just a Sunday Christian to that of a deeper, questioning relationship with a God who was touched and deeply moved by their grief.


 in memory of Cindy, we offer you hope in your dark night of the soul, as you face your grief and loss.  May you find that comfort as well.  

The Authors

  • bullet-note.gif   Articles Related to the Grief and Loss Journey:

1.  How to Survive in the Wilderness  arrow right.jpg
2.  The Valley of Grief 
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3.  What is your view of Death? 
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4.  Hearing from God 
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5.  The Loom of Time  arrow right.jpg

All these articles are alive and linked for you to open, read and even print off.

Please honour the hours we have spent as authors and remember the copyright restrictions.

If you don't know what these restrictions are, please check our eBook page.  Thanks!


"Suicide Intervention - Finding Some Answers"  

A summary of the current research on the reasons, factors and what groups are at high risk when thinking about ending their own lives.
We explore the questions about teen suicide - Are they the highest risk group and what can be done about their crisis issues?  You will find a section on the aspects of Intervention and the underlying Principles of Prevention for People-Helpers, Counsellors and Mentors. 

We have continued with one model of Intervention - "Living Works", a Canadian program that is available for presenting seminars to groups who wish to learn more about walking the journey.


Research Price $10.00


A Special eBook for May:

  • "Understanding the Grief and Loss Journey"
  •  A 63 page study looking into what do we grieve about and what are the normal signs of grief since it is all around us?  What are the signs and usual stages people need to work through?

    We have
    included Guidelines and Suggestions for people working in this area, either as Grief Counsellors, People-Helpers or with friends and relatives facing this path.  
  • What are the signs of 'Stuck', Abnormal Grief' and how can you find a way out of this numb-painful place? 



$17.00 on the Articles and eBooks page!  


bullet-note.jif     Other interesting websites:

Death of a Brother or Sister   A site that helps parents talk to an adolescent who has lost a brother or sister, giving hints such as 'Try to be honest and provide emotional support, but don't be surprised if he needs to escape'.

Kids' Health - Topics - Coping with change - loss and grief   24 Feb 2006 ... Helps explain what loss is, different kinds of loss, feelings that people have, and what may help.

Parentlink - Grief and loss           Listed in 18th, Nov 2008, an article on children and how they also feel grief when they lose someone close to them. The impact of the loss may be greater in the early years.

Young Carers Australia - Loss and grief  Young carers often tell us that as well as losing these relationships and opportunities that they also experience other types of grief and loss.

Grief and loss A - Z     Australian Directory of organisations providing advice and support after the loss of a child. 
Find them here:


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