Taylor and Jen chatted with Dr. Melissa Baartman-Mork about how grief and laughter can come together in beautiful and healing ways. She is the author of Navigating Grief with Humor, and teaches a class by the same name at the University of Northwestern, Saint Paul.
Melissa has experienced significant loss in her life: her parents died when she was in college, she lost beloved friends to suicide, brain aneurysm, heart attack, and she has suffered a series of devastating reproductive losses. Then Melissa’s husband died of an aggressive cancer, and she was left to parent their two children alone.
Through these hard experiences, Melissa used psychological theory (and a questionable sense of humor) to build her resilience. But there was something else she needed to do; she needed a purpose for her pain. All of these losses could not be in vain – she needed to help others rebound from their own losses.