Reflections

Reflections

Dia De Los Muertos at Tu Nidito

Dia de Los Muertos is a tradition celebrated at Tu Nidito, it is truly one of the most special events offered. It is a night where families gather at the little nest and bring an ofrenda, tell the stories of their loved ones and connect with other families about their memories. It reveals a  unique space to grieve as a family and to hold each other as we celebrate the life of those who are no longer with us.

The air fills with laughter and joy as families arrive. Each family takes a turn  finding a spot on the table for their ofrenda. Memories come in all shapes: pictures, stuffed animals, shirts, pillows and flowers. Children go running to the playground, parents watch them from a safe distance. Through my lens I try to capture the beauty of joy from these  families, who I know are grieving. As I see them, I ask myself: who are they thinking of? Who was their loved one? Are they nervous to share? Or possibly looking forward to it?

Ofrenda table with memories of loved ones.

When the Group Coordinator comes to the microphone, families take  their seats. The laughter from the children stops, opening the way to the anticipated nostalgia this night holds.

A poem is read, A Litany of Remembrance – We Remember Them by Rabbi Sylvan Kamens and Rabbi Jack Riemer.

Silence continues to fill the space until Bruce Phillips picks up his guitar, turning the silence into melody:

Bruce Phillips, volunteer at Tu Nidito.

You’ve been taken from me, and I am still here.

Though you loved me I know so straight and so clear

And I feel like I’m dreaming, hold my hand through the night

 

And I’ll never forget you, but I’m scared that I might

You groaned at my jokes and you laughed at my songs

You made up great excuses when I did things wrong

And when you went away, you’d ask me along

Except for this last time……so long

 

Filled to the brim, filled to my eyes

Your heart and mine

You’ll always be with me

And I’ll see you sometime

The melody blends into the night, into the wind and swirls around everyone. Families hold on to each other. Tears roll down our cheeks, we feel our hearts moving. There is no other thought in our minds but of that special person. There is no other wish, but to hold them one more time. There is no greater desire than to connect with them in that moment. There’s no stronger feeling but the love we all have for our special person.

With the song ending, families gather courage and one by one stand up to share their loved one’s story. With each story, the memories of our own special person rise to the surface. Through the lens of my camera, I try and capture the tears, the napkin over someone’s eye, the immediate sadness this grief has brought to them. But as soon as they talk about their loved one, their eyes spark, they smile and, even with a broken voice, they go on to share the life of their special person who has died.

Grandmas, grandpas, mothers, fathers, husbands, wives, sons, daughters.

One by one stories unfold about them, who they were, their favorite things to do, their favorite food, their personality.

Funny, loving, kind, hard-working, generous, smart, fierce, strong.

It is such a beautiful feeling, that in a space among strangers, we can share this moment. We find the relief in connecting with each other’s grief. We do not compare, there’s no greater or lesser grief, there is just grief, in each of us and our journey through it. We are reminded that we are not alone in the feelings of despair, or sadness and the moments of joy.

When everyone has shared, the music fills the night, again, I have to step away and wipe some tears. This night has brought countless memories and feelings. It has brought comfort and a special way to celebrate the life of our loved ones. It has brought joy in thinking of them.

As we share food, there is a slight change, it feels like everyone is closer to each other. As I take more pictures of families, I capture the community Tu Nidito has nurtured and supported. A community in which the grieving come together to remember and honor our loved ones in an open space designed for those who want to share more…

…And also for those in the back, too shy to come forward, sharing their story in their hearts.

We talk about how we feel at Tu Nidito

We begin to heal at Tu Nidito

We tell our story, sing our song

We found a place where we belong

We belong at Tu Nidito

Written by Meredith Villaseñor, Tu Nidito Staff Member, in loving memory of her sister Anapaola.

Tools for Handling Back-to-School Season While Grieving

Tools For Handling Back-to-School Season While Grieving.

After a long summer break, it can be challenging to return to a school routine. When you combine the element of grief, it can be particularly challenging for the entire family. Children and teens who are processing their own grief will likely find this change in their day-to-day activities overwhelming and with that experience increased anxiety. If you are a parent or caregiver of a grieving child or teen, the feeling of being overwhelmed might be familiar.

Tu Nidito offers one-on-one and group support twice every month to children and families going through a serious medical diagnosis or the death of a loved one. Each time, our Support Specialists are there to provide support and comfort in a warm and welcoming environment. 

Here are some tools we hope you find useful to practice at home during this back-to-school season:

1. Take care of yourself.

Any sort of activity while grieving might seem difficult, but any steps you can make to practice self care will make a difference. Children feel better supported and understood by a healthy adult.

2. Listen.

Be there and take the time to listen. By being open with your own experience of grief and sharing memories and stories, it will open the door for deeper communication. Even when they have nothing to say at a given point, remind them that you are there to listen should they want to share their feelings.

3. Create Your Own Little Nest.

 You can pick a spot in your home for you and your child or teen that feels comforting and safe. Take a moment after or before school to let them express and release heavy emotions should they arise. This practice can also be a great source of comfort on difficult days such as birthdays, holidays and anniversaries. 

4. Take it one day at a time.

When grieving, most of the intense parts of it take longer to overcome than one might think. Be patient with yourself and provide the same approach to your child or teen. Celebrate small achievements or progress made at school. These may include making a new acquaintance or praise from a teacher.

This adorable book explores a unique way to connect with your kiddos when they are away. For younger children, school is a big change from their daily routine at home. Tu Nidito’s “Little’s” group read this book during August. It can give them the courage and comfort when they feel heavy emotions during their grief in the school day.

We hope that you find these tools useful during this back-to-school season, and will serve as a reminder that you are not alone. 

Tu Nidito employs a trained Community Outreach Director who provides resources and education to the Southern Arizona community including school personnel, social services, and community organizations. We are here for our community. If you would like to arrange a workshop for your organization you can request it here. 

Full articles and more detail can be found by visiting these websites: 

https://nacg.org/resource-library/ 

https://grievingstudents.org/

Expressing Grief through Art

Expressing Grief Through Art

Art Room

Tu Nidito’s facilities offer a variety of ways to support youth in expressing themselves through play including a vast playground with swings, slides, a basketball court and play-house. Beyond this, we have specialized rooms including a Volcano Room for letting out big emotions through physical play; an Imagination Room for expressive play; and an Art Room that let’s kids and teens explore visual self-expression. 

Beyond these unique spaces, Tu Nidito’s support groups offer specialized curriculum to help children and teens acknowledge, understand, and process common emotions brought on by grief including sadness, guilt, anger, and uncertainty.  Recently, our program team and volunteers led an art activity that encouraged reflection about the special person in our life who died:

My grief is like…..

Kids and teens then created their own unique piece of art using colors that represent their feelings and special people. While some were bright and cheerful, others were darker and somber; each piece unique and expressive.

If you are looking for an activity to help process grief, this activity can easily be done from the comfort of your home using art supplies such as paper, crayons, or paint.

Tu Nidito is a place of comfort, hope, and support for children and families experiencing grief. Learn more about our services here or call (520) 322-9155.

Volunteer Appreciation Week

VOLUNTEER APPRECIATION WEEK

Volunteers are the pieces that complete our puzzle!

Every day we appreciate the dedication of Tu Nidito volunteers, but in honor of Volunteer Appreciation week April 17 – 23, we enjoyed showering them with some extra love! Our hard-working volunteers, more than 135 individuals, gift their time by providing a listening ear and supporting children and their families seeking comfort and a safe place to grieve the death of a loved one or a serious medical diagnosis. Our volunteers are quite literally heroes to Tu Nidito’s mission, serving as Group Facilitators, offering one-on-one support and providing critical behind-the-scenes support by assisting at events, and helping with office tasks and outreach. The impact is huge and their gift of time, heart, and dedication is what makes it possible for Tu Nidito to help more than 650 grieving children each year. Thank you, Tu Nidito Volunteers!

Tu Nidito performs as a puzzle with many intricate pieces. Volunteers are critical pieces of a very important mission: Ensuring No Child Grieves Alone!

Meet Two of Our Amazing Volunteers!

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As shared by Tu Nidito staff: “She brings such warmth and light to each group night. She is an inspiration to the other facilitators who work with her and especially to the children she works with. They love to hear her read to them in group the stories that help them understand their grief. And when it comes to free time, she dives right into whatever game or activity the kids want to play. Her smile and laughter is infectious and she helps bring hope and healing to all she comes in contact with at Tu Nidito.”

As shared by Tu Nidito staff: “Mariah is great at working with kids of all ages. She has a calming presence and is always willing to assist where needed. She embodies our mission outside of Tu Nidito through her clinical internship in the mental health field and by simply being herself. She is a huge asset to Tu Nidito and I can’t picture our groups without her!”

Be part of our Puzzle!

Last year more than 135 volunteers gifted a total of 2,500 hours of their time to Tu Nidito’s mission through group facilitation, one-on-one support, office support and event support.

If this mission speaks to you, we’d love to hear from you! Please complete a Volunteer Interest Form at www.tunidito.org/volunteer or schedule a tour with us today by calling (520) 322-9155.

Giant Jenga: A Game About Grief

Giant Jenga

A Game About Grief

Throughout the summer months of 2021, we have hosted outdoor, monthly intergenerational groups here at Tu Nidito. Rather than dividing up into peer-to-peer groups, families stay together as a unit for the duration of the group to participate in a guided activity that relates to grief. August curriculum at each intergenerational bereavement group gathering included a game of Giant Jenga! 

Like the traditional game of Jenga, each player removes a block from a tall tower, then carefully places it at the top until the stack inevitably comes crashing down. However, Giant Jenga at Tu Nidito includes a special twist and each Jenga block is marked with a number, and every number corresponds to a question that the player may answer. Once the player who drew their block answers the question or passes, other participants and family members can share their response to that question, too. Of course, any player is invited to say “I pass” if they’d prefer.

You can design your very own version of Giant Jenga for your family and share it with us! Simply label a set of Jenga blocks with numbers and write out a corresponding question list. To ensure that questions are age appropriate for each player, we’ve put together separate question lists to encourage sharing for Littles (3.5 – 7 year olds), Middles (8 – 12 year olds), and Teens/Adults (13 and older). You will see the topics on these lists include fun “get-to-know-you” questions, and deeper questions including some about what your special person was like, and your personal grief experience. Here are some examples to get you started, so that you may play your own game of Giant Jenga – grief edition, at home!

Littles:
1. Do you have any pets?
2. If you had three wishes, what would you wish for?
3. What makes you feel worried?
4. Did you get to say goodbye to your special person before they died?
5. Where do you think your special person is now?


Middles:
1. If you were invisible, where would you go and what would you do?
2. Do you ever dream about your special person? What are these dreams like?
3. What is your favorite snack food?
4. What did your special person look like?
5. How do you feel about going back to school?


Teens/Adults:
1. What is your favorite type of music or favorite song?
2. What do you wish you could have said to your special person before they died?
3. What do you wish other people understood about grief?
4. What is something that you do really well?
5. What do you miss about your special person?


What questions would you add to the list? Show us what you come up with by tagging us on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/tunidito) or emailing [email protected]

Durante los meses de verano de 2021, hemos organizado grupos intergeneracionales mensuales al aire libre aquí en Tu Nidito. En lugar de dividirse en grupos de diferentes edades, las familias permanecen juntas durante grupo para participar en una actividad guiada que se relaciona con el duelo.

¡El plan de estudios de agosto en cada reunión de grupo de duelo intergeneracional incluyó un juego de Giant Jenga! Como en el juego tradicional de Jenga, cada jugador quita un bloque de una torre alta, luego lo coloca con cuidado en la parte superior hasta que la pila inevitablemente se derrumba. Sin embargo, Giant Jenga en Tu Nidito incluye un toque especial y cada bloque de Jenga está marcado con un número, y cada número corresponde a una pregunta que el jugador puede responder. Una vez que el jugador que sacó su bloque responde la pregunta o pasa, otros participantes y miembros de la familia también pueden compartir su respuesta a esa pregunta. Por supuesto, cualquier jugador está invitado a decir “paso” si lo prefiere.

¡Puedes diseñar tu propia versión de Giant Jenga para tu familia y compartirla con nosotros! Simplemente etiquete un conjunto de bloques de Jenga con números y escriba la lista de preguntas correspondiente. Para asegurarnos de que las preguntas sean apropiadas para la edad de cada jugador, preparamos listas de preguntas específicas para los Littles (de 3,5 a 7 años), los Middles (de 8 a 12 años) y los adolescentes / adultos (a partir de 13 años). Verá que los temas en estas listas incluyen preguntas divertidas para “llegar a conocernos” y preguntas más profundas, incluidas algunas sobre cómo era su persona especial y su experiencia personal de duelo. Aquí hay algunos ejemplos para comenzar, para que pueda jugar su propio juego de Giant Jenga – edición de duelo, ¡en casa!

Pequeños (Littles):

  1. ¿Tienes mascotas?
  2. Si tuvieras tres deseos, ¿qué desearías?
  3. ¿Qué te preocupa?
  4. ¿Llegaste a despedirte de tu persona especial antes de que muriera?
  5. ¿Dónde crees que está tu persona especial ahora?

Medianos (Middles):

  1. Si fueras invisible, ¿a dónde irías y qué harías?
  2. ¿Sueñas alguna vez con tu persona especial? ¿Cómo son estos sueños
  3. ¿Cuál es tu botana favorita?
  4. ¿Cómo era tu persona especial
  5. ¿Cómo te sientes al volver a la escuela?

Adolescentes/Adultos:

  1. ¿Cuál es tu tipo de música o canción favorita?
  2. ¿Qué te hubiera gustado haberle dicho a tu persona especial antes de que muriera?
  3. ¿Qué te gustaría que otras personas entendieran sobre el duelo?
  4. ¿Qué es algo que haces muy bien
  5. ¿Qué extrañas de tu persona especial?

¿Qué preguntas agregarías a la lista? Muéstranos lo que se te ocurrió etiquetándonos en Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/tunidito) o enviando un correo electrónico a [email protected]

What to Expect at a Tu Nidito Support Group

Peer-To-Peer Support

Programs for families grieving the death of a loved one or a caregiver’s serious medical diagnosis

January 14, 2021

Tu Nidito’s grief support groups are currently being offered virtually, through Zoom video conferencing. While the way we meet is different, the heart of each meeting remains the same. Below, we’ll walk through each step of a virtual evening with Tu Nidito.

Why split up families into peer groups?

At Tu Nidito, we offer two types of support groups: 

  • For families who are grieving the death of a special person
  • For families when a parent or adult caregiver has been diagnosed with a serious medical condition.

In both of these support groups, we provide age-appropriate emotional support that meets the developmental needs of participants. We achieve this by dividing families into four separate sub-groups: Littles (ages 3.5 to 7), Middles (ages 8 to 12) Teens (ages 13 to 18) and Adults (parents and caregivers).

Who is a Group Coordinator?

Tu Nidito groups are run by staff members called Group Coordinators. We have four Group Coordinators on staff: Brigid, Diana, Kristin, and Serena. In addition to providing emotional support and community resources to families both during and outside of group nights, Group Coordinators also handle group logistics and oversee the volunteer facilitators.

Who facilitates the groups?

Facilitators are a very important part of Tu Nidito groups. They are trained volunteers and assigned to an age group so they can work directly with the children and adults. With the support of the Group Coordinator, they lead each part of the group evening: the rules, check-in, talking circle question, activity and closing. Our facilitators are made up of undergraduate students, young professionals, and retirees. 

What are the group rules?

Group Rules are a way for our group members to feel comfortable and safe. The rules are a bit different for each age group, but here are some of our important ones:

  • The “I Pass” Rule: You can always say “I Pass” if you are called on to share and you do not want to or are not ready.
  • Confidentiality: Anything you or anyone else says in group will remain private, unless there is concern of harm to yourself or others.
  • Talking Stick Rule, or “Taking Turns” Rule: Everyone will have an opportunity to share, uninterrupted.
  • Comparing Losses Rule: Everyone’s loss and experience with grief is different, therefore participants will not compare their grief or loss with someone else’s.
  • Advice Rule: We ask that each participant refrain from giving advice to their fellow group members, unless that person explicitly asks for advice.

How does a group begin?

Each night, we start our group with a check-in once we are in our Talking Circle Room. We do this with all age groups.

For bereavement support groups, participants say:

  1. Their name

  2. The name of their special person or people who died

  3. How they died

  4. How they are feeling that night

For support groups for families impacted by a caregiver’s serious diagnosis, participants say:
  1. Their name

  2. The name of their family member with a serious diagnosis

  3. What the diagnosis is

  4. How they are feeling that night

During our groups, we utilize reflective listening, giving the person who is sharing the comfort of knowing they are been heard.

In the past, we used a Talking Stick that we would pass around the room, giving each person the opportunity to do their check-in. During Zoom groups, each person is called by name when it’s their turn to talk. 

What is a Talking Circle Question?

An example of a Talking Circle Question in our Littles group might be:

What do you wish you could say to your special person?

A Teen question might be:

Who told you when your special person died? Did someone provide comfort to you at that time? 

The questions provide a path for everyone to feel safe in exploring their feelings and finding common ground with others.

Adults also have their own Talking Circle Question and discuss what their children are being asked so that they can continue talking about the subject as a family if they wish.

What sorts of activities do you do during group?

There are many important things we can do when we are grieving or experiencing the impacts of a diagnosis. At Tu Nidito we might draw or sketch images of our feelings, write letters to the person who died, or to the serious medical condition itself. We read books and play games to have fun and feel validated. We learn coping skills to calm our bodies and minds, such as deep breathing. Every group is something different, which means there’s always something new to do!

How does a group night end?

At the end of each group night, we will take a few moments to honor and celebrate any birthdays, death anniversaries, or other special days that might be coming up. Afterwards, we typically hold hands and pass around a “love squeeze” as a way for everyone to take home all of the love, comfort, hope, and support that they received from each other that night.

Since we now meet on Zoom, everyone puts their hand up towards their camera and on the count of three, we all squeeze our hands into fists and say “I got it,” signifying that each person “got” all that love and warmth. This tides us over until the next time we get to meet again.

Volunteering with Tu Nidito

Do you have questions about our support groups?

Give us a call at (520) 322-9155 or email us at [email protected]

Que esperar en los grupos de apoyo de Tu Nidito

Programas para familias pasando por la muerte de un ser querido o el diagnostico de una enfermedad seria de un cuidador.

14 de enero 2021

Los grupos de apoyo para el duelo de Tu Nidito actualmente son ofrecidos virtualmente por medio de videoconferencias de Zoom. Mientras que la forma en la que nos juntamos es diferente, el corazón de cada reunión se mantiene igual. A continuación, repasaremos cada paso de un grupo virtual con Tu Nidito.

Porque separamos familias en grupos por edades?

En Tu Nidito, ofrecemos dos tipos de grupos de apoyo:

  • Para familias que estan pasando por duelo de la muerte de una persona especial.
  • Para familias cuando un padre o cuidador ha sido diagnosticado con una condicion medica seria.

En ambos grupos de apoyo, proporcionamos apoyo emocional de acuerdo a la edad para satisfacer las necesidades de desarrollo de cada participante.      Logramos esto dividiendo a las familias en 4 sub-grupos: Pequenos (edades 3.5 to 7), Medianos (edades 8 to 12) Adolescentes (edades 13 to 18) y Adultos (Padres y cuidadores).

Quienes son los Coordinadores de Grupo?

Los grupos son manejados por personal de Tu Nidito llamados Coordinadores de Grupo. Tenemos custro Coordinadores de Grupo son: Brigid, Diana, Kristin, and Serena. Ademas de proporcionar apoyo emocional y recursos en la comunidad para familias durante y fuera de los grupos de apoyo, los Coordinadores de Grupo también manejan la logística de cada grupo y supervisan a los facilitadores voluntarios.

Quienes facilitan los grupos?

Los facilitadores son una parte muy importante de los grupos de Tu Nidito. Son voluntarios entrenados y asignados a cada grupo para que puedan trabajar directamente con niños y adultos. Con el apoyo del Coordinador de Grupo, ellos encabezan cada parte de la noche: Las reglas de grupo, la presentación, las preguntas de la noche, actividades y clausura. La mayoría de nuestros facilitadores son estudiantes, jóvenes profesionales o jubilados.

Que son las reglas de grupo?

Las reglas de grupo son una manera de que los miembros de nuestro grupo se sientan a gusto y seguros. Las reglas son un poco diferentes para cada grupo, pero aquí están unas que son las mas importantes:

  • La regla “Yo paso”: Tu siempre puedes decir “Yo paso” si eres llamado a hablar pero tu no quieres o no te sientes listo.
  • Confidencialidad: Todo lo que dices en el grupo o lo que los demas dicen en el grupo se mantendra privado, al menos que haya una preocupacion acerca de lesiones a ti mismo o contra alguien mas.  
  • La regla “La varita para hablar” o “Tomar turnos”: Todos tendran la oportunidad de hablar sin ser interrumpidos.
  • La regla de comparar perdidas: La experiencia de cada persona con el duelo es diferente, por lo tanto, los participantes no comparan su duelo y perdidas con la de los demás
  • Regla de consejos: Le pedimos a cada participante que se abstengan de ofrecer consejos a los demas participantes del grupo al menos que la persona, abiertamente, pida consejo.
  • The “I Pass” Rule: You can always say “I Pass” if you are called on to share and you do not want to or are not ready.
  • Confidentiality: Anything you or anyone else says in group will remain private, unless there is concern of harm to yourself or others.
  • Talking Stick Rule, or “Taking Turns” Rule: Everyone will have an opportunity to share, uninterrupted.
  • Comparing Losses Rule: Everyone’s loss and experience with grief is different, therefore participants will not compare their grief or loss with someone else’s.
  • Advice Rule: We ask that each participant refrain from giving advice to their fellow group members, unless that person explicitly asks for advice.

Como empieza el grupo?

Cada noche, empezamos el grupo con una presentacion una vez que estamos en nuestros cuartos. Hacemos esto en todos los grupos con todas las edades.

Para grupos de apoyo de duelo, los participantes dicen:

  1. Su nombre
  2. Nombre de su persona especial o personas especiales que murieron
  3. Como murieron
  4. Como se sienten esa noche

Para grupos de apoyo para familias con un padre o cuidador impactado por el diagnostico de una enfermedad seria, los participantes dicen:

  1. Su nombre
  2. Nombre del miembro de su familia con la enfermedad seria
  3. Cual es el diagnostico
  4. Como se sienten esa noche

Durante nuestros grupos, utilizamos escucha reflectiva, dandole a la persona que esta compartiendo, la comodidad de saber que estan siendo escuchados.

En el pasado, utilizábamos la varita para hablar que pasábamos alrededor del grupo, dándole a cada persona la oportunidad de hacer su presentación. Durante nuestros grupos en zoom, cada persona es llamada por su nombre cuando es su turno de hablar.

Que son las preguntas del grupo?

Un ejemplo de las preguntas del grupo para los pequenos puede ser:

Que deseas que le pudieras decir a tu persona especial?

Una pregunta para los adolescentes puede ser:

Quien te dijo que tu persona especial murio? Alguien te dio confort en ese momento?

Las preguntas abren camino para que todos se sientan seguros al explorar sus emociones y crear un terreno comun con otros.

Los adultos tambien tienen sus preguntas de grupo y discuten lo que sus ninos estan hablando en grupo para que puedan continuar estas conversaciones como familia cuando gusten.

Que tipos de actividades se hacen durante el grupo?

Hay muchas cosas importantes que podemos hacer cuando estamos pasando por duelo o experimentando los impactos de un diagnostico. En Tu Nidito talvez dibujemos imagenes de nuestras emociones, talvez escribamos una carta a nuestra persona especial que murio o una carta directamente a la condicion medica. Leemos libros y jugamos juegos para divertirnos y sentirnos validados. Aprendemos habilidades de enfrentamiento para calmar nuestros cuerpos y mentes como respirar profundo. Cada grupo es algo diferente, lo que quiere decir que siempre hay algo nuevo que hacer.   

Como se termina la noche?

Al final de cada noche, tomamos un momento para honorar y celebrar cumpleaños, aniversarios de muerte, u otros días especiales que están por venir. Después, típicamente nos tomamos de las manos y nos damos un “apretón del amor” como una manera para que todos se lleven a sus casas todo el amor, esperanza, confort y apoyo que recibieron de cada uno esa noche.

Como ahora nos vemos en Zoom, todos ponemos nuestras manos en la cámara y a la cuenta de tres, apretamos nuestras manos y decirnos “lo tengo”, lo que significa que cada persona “tiene” todo el amor, y calor de sus compañeros. Esto nos une hasta que nos vemos en la próxima vez.

Volunteering with Tu Nidito

¿Tiene preguntas?

 (520) 322-9155 | [email protected]

Making Plans for The Holidays

Making Plans for The Holidays

Preparing For The Holiday Season Following the Death of a Special Person

For Adults:

It’s no surprise that this holiday season will be different than most. Plus, when you’re grieving, the holiday season can cause feelings of discomfort as you navigate life without the presence of your special person. You and your children most likely have ideas for how you’re envisioning the holidays this year. We always encourage families to openly communicate with each other about their needs and wants and holiday plans are a great opportunity for this communication. Creating plans as a family, as well as individual plans, can create a sense of ownership and pride among all who are involved.

Discussion Questions:

Have you discussed holiday ideas and plans with your children this year?

If so, have these discussions shown you’re on the same or different pages?

If not, what has stopped you from having these conversations?  

Print or download our Holiday Planning Guide to help facilitate these conversations:

For Children and Teens:

Love is an incredibly special gift that we give to our special people and that they give to us. Love is a gift that lasts forever. To express your love for your special person, make a holiday card for them, celebrating their life and the love you shared together. You can fill your card with a writing of some kind (a message, poem, story, etc.) and/or with drawings. Display it somewhere in your home or keep it somewhere special.
For more resources or information about Tu Nidito’s grief support programs, please call (520) 322-9155. Additional tips and insights regarding grief and the holidays can be found here

Haciendo planes para los dias festivos

Planeando las festividades despues de la muerte de una persona especial.

Para Adultos:

No es sorpresa que esta temporada navideña sera muy diferente a otras. Ademas, cuando se esta pasando por duelo, los dias festivos puedan hacernos sentir incomodos mientras navegamos la vida sin la presencia de nuestra persona especial. Usted y sus niños puede que tengan una idea de como quieren pasar los dias festivos este año. Siempre alentamos a familias a que platiquen abiertamente acerca de sus necesidades y las festividades es una gran oportunidad para practicar comunicacion. Crear planes con su familia, al igual que planes individuales, pueden darle un sentido de posesion y orgullo a todos los que estan envueltos.

Preguntas de discusion:

 

A discutido con sus hijos acerca de los planes para los dias festivos de este año?

 

Si lo a hecho, estas discusiones le han enseñado si estan en la misma pagina o diferentes?

 

Si no lo ha hecho, que le a impedido tener esta conversacion?

 

 

Imprima o descargue nuestra Guia de Planificacion de las festividades para ayudarle a facilitar estas conversaciones:

Para niños y adolescentes:

Amor, es un regalo increiblemente especial que le damos a nuestra persona especial y que ellos nos dan. El amor es un regalo que dura siempre. Para expresar tu amor por tu persona especial, haz una carta navideña para ellos, celebrando su vida y el amor que ustedes compartieron. Puedes llenar tu carta con algun escrito como un mensaje, un poema, una historia, y/o un dibujo. Pon la carta en algun lugar de u casa o guardala en un lugar especial.

Para mas recursos e información acerca de los grupos de apoyo de Tu Nidito, llame al (520) 322-9155. 

Responding to Children in the Wake of Community Tragedy

Helping children respond to tragedy

Tips & Suggestions

June 3, 2020

When tragedy of any kind occurs in our local or national community, the impact is profound. Our innate response is to protect ourselves and the people we love. Tu Nidito Children and Family Services is here to support our community’s children and families through their grief.

Children respond to tragedy by expressing their grief in varying ways, whether it is with fear and sadness, or with questions and confusion. Parents or caregivers may find it challenging to explain tragic events to children, but we encourage caregivers to be truthful and straightforward. Age appropriate honesty between caregiver/adult and the child is an essential part of the grieving process, leading to comfort and hope.

The following are some tips and suggestions for parents and caregivers of grieving children:

  • Respond together. Children observe the way that their parents handle situations. By sharing your feelings and thoughts, you are giving your child permission to do the same. This should, of course, be done in age/developmentally appropriate ways. Sharing the truth with them will build a foundation of trust as they continue to process their grief.
  • Encourage your child to ask questions and be as open and honest as possible. Your child may be feeling confused and unsafe. He or she might feel afraid that the event will happen again or happen to someone that they know. Use your child’s own language to explain feelings and validate what they express and are experiencing.
  • Be mindful in engaging with the media. While it may be tempting to stay up-to-date with the latest developments, try to avoid watching when your children are in the room. Violent imagery, descriptions, and constant replaying and retelling of the story might upset your child, adding to their fear and confusion. Consider how you might help your child engage with the news in helpful ways without overexposing them.
  • Find other outlets for your children to express themselves. This is especially helpful if your child is too young to put what they are feeling into words. Encourage drawing, painting, or playtime to allow them to show how they feel.
  • Try to stay in a routine if possible. You should not “bury your head in the sand” and ignore what has happened, but try to stick to your normal schedule. For example, maintain bath, dinner and bedtime as well as you are able.
  • Find a special way to commemorate those who have died. Attend (or virtually watch) a memorial service, or light a candle and explain to your child what those actions mean.
  • Let your child know that they can ask you anything at any time, whether it is in a day, a week, a month, or a year. Tragedy might spark your child’s thoughts on death and they may have questions down the road.
  • Reassure your child. Sometimes, children ask questions that you might not know the answer to. Try to reassure them that you do everything you can to keep them safe.
  • If you need additional support, please call Tu Nidito at 520.322.9155. We can refer you to the appropriate resources for help dealing with traumatic events and grief.

A Friend Like You

A Friend Like You

A sing-a-long about the importance of having community

A Friend Like You

Right now, the world seems to be remembering the importance of community. Through community, we create connection and through those connections we find comfort, hope, and support. For over 25 years, Tu Nidito has been an integral part of supporting Tucson as the only agency in Southern Arizona providing support to children, families and young adults who are grieving the death of a loved one or the diagnosis of a serious medical condition. Through our mission, Tu Nidito has its own very special community.

The generosity of our Tu Nidito community helps grieving children thrive as we march towards fulfilling our vision: that no child grieves alone. From support group facilitators to members of the Board of Directors; faithful donors to Remarkable Mom honorees . . . Each of you are considered friends of Tu Nidito and we are humbled to be connected and united with you under one mission.

A dear friend of Tu Nidito is Bruce Phillips. For many years Bruce has been bringing comfort and joy to Tu Nidito through his love for music. With just one strum of his guitar, our hearts feel lighter and full of love. Bruce’s version of the song Friend Like U by Geoff Moore is a great way to express our mutual connection to Tu Nidito’s mission. We need each other and there is no way we would all make it alone!  It’s so good to know Tu Nidito has friends like each and every one of you.

Now more than ever, we see how important it is to stay connected to friends, family, and yourself as you may be navigating a unique journey through grief. If you haven’t already, visit the following posts on our blog. They’ll provide you with tools and activities to find a sense of community and connectedness in the midst of grief, even from home:
 

Un amigo como tu

Ahorita, el mundo parece estar recordando la importancia de la comunidad. Por medio de la comunidad, creamos conexiones y mediante estas conexiones encontramos confort, esperanza y apoyo. Por mas de 25 años, Tu Nidito a sido parte integral de apoyo a Tucson al ser la única agencia en el sur de Arizona que provee apoyo a niños, familias y jóvenes adultos que están pasando por duelo de la muerte de un ser querido o el diagnostico de una enfermedad seria. Por nuestra misión, Tu Nidito tiene su misma comunidad espectacular. 

La generosidad de nuestra comunidad de Tu Nidito ayuda a niños afligidos a prosperar mientras marchamos para cumplir con nuestra misión: Ningún niño sufre solo. Desde nuestros facilitadores de grupo, miembros de nuestra Mesa Directivadonadores leales hasta Madres Remarcables homenajeadas…. Cada uno de ustedes es considerado amigo de Tu Nidito y nos sentimos honrados de estar conectados y unidos con ustedes bajo una misma misión.

Un muy querido amigo de Tu Nidito es Bruce Phillips. Por muchos años Bruce ha traído alegría y confort a nosotros por su amor de música. Con solo un rasgar de su guitarra, nuestros corazones se sienten iluminados y llenos de amor. La versión de Bruce de la canción Friend Like U de Geoff Moore es una manera especial de expresar nuestra conexión mutual a la misión de Tu Nidito. Nos necesitamos los unos a los otros, no hay manera de hacer esto solos. Se siente tan bien saber que Tu Nidito tiene amigos como cada uno de ustedes. Gracias.

Ahora mas que nunca, podemos ver la importancia de mantener conexiones con amigos, familia, y tu mismo cuando estás navegando una pérdida. Si aún no lo has hecho, visita las siguientes publicaciones en nuestro blog. Te darán técnicas y actividades para encontrar un sentido de comunidad y conexión en medio del dolor, incluso desde casa:
 

Reading with Friends… ANIMAL Friends!

"Little Beaver and the Echo"

Online curriculum for children and families impacted by grief

Theme: Supportive Loved Ones

When you are grieving a loss of health due to a serious medical condition or a loss of a loved one due to a death, surrounding yourself with loved ones who truly care and validate your feelings can feel very comforting. Right now, even though we can’t see many of our loved ones in person, we can still connect with them to receive the support we need.

Our friends at TRAK (Therapeutic Ranch for Animals and Kids) remind us that loved ones come in all forms. Animals can be some of the best friends we may ever have and they are great at bringing joy to our hearts. Follow along with Vanessa from TRAK as she reads Little Beaver and the Echo written by Amy MacDonald and illustrated by Sarah Fox-Davies. Thank you to Penguin Random House, the publisher of this story. Thank you, Vanessa and the TRAK team for introducing us to your goat friends!

We are still available by phone and email. Leave us a message and we will get back to you promptly.

(520) 322-9155 | [email protected]

Tema: Seres queridos

Cuando estas en duelo por la perdida de salud debido a una enfermedad seria o por la muerte de un ser amado, rodearte de seres queridos que realmente se preocupan y validan tus emociones se puede sentir muy confortante. En estos momentos, cuando no podemos ver a muchos de nuestros seres queridos, todavía podemos conectarnos con ellos para recibir el apoyo que necesitamos.

Nuestros amigos de TRAK (Rancho terapéutico para animales y niños) nos recuerdan que nuestros seres queridos vienen en todas formas. Los animales pueden ser nuestros mejores amigos y son fantásticos trayendo alegría a nuestros corazones. Sigue a Vanessa de TRAK mientras lee el libro Little Beaver and the Echo escrito por Amy MacDonald e ilustrado por Sarah Fox-Davies. Gracias a Penguin Random House, los editores de esta historia. ¡Gracias a Vanessa y TRAK por presentarnos a tus amigas cabras!

Si necesitas apoyo, estamos disponibles! Deja un mensaje y nos pondremos en contacto con usted.

 520-322-9155 | [email protected].