The author of a book about her journey through the grieving process will sign copies in a Saturday event at the Columbia County Library.
Trudi Dunn, of Evans, author of Forever in My Heart, says she hopes to use her experience of loss to help others cope.
"The pain of loss, it hurts. The book is for anyone who has been touched or affected by loss," she said.
Within a two-year period, Dunn gave birth to a stillborn son and lost another minutes after birth, she said. She isolated herself, became depressed and felt angry.
"I thought that I could work through things on my own, so I didn't seek help from anyone," she said. "I even asked God to just let me die."
Her friends suggested that she allow herself to grieve, she said.
"I thought I was doing OK. I was in denial," she said. "I realized I had to give myself permission to grieve."
She began searching bookstores for information about grieving and reviewed information she received from the hospital. None offered what she needed, she said.
"No one tells you how to grieve or what to expect when you grieve. Some will tell you to grieve for about a year and then move on. In reality, you cannot go through the stages of grief based on a calendar or a date," she said. "They tried to help, but the information was so impersonal."
That motivated Dunn to write a book about grief and to share her experiences.
"Once you go through a loss and you come to an acceptance, your heart wants to reach out and help others. It's not superficial. It's coming from the heart, and to me, that is more personal than anything," she said.
Through her loss, Dunn's faith has grown stronger.
"It became a spiritual journey for me," she said. "My ability to trust in God, that was what kept me. I realize now that God was there, holding me, and never abandoned me."
Dunn, a registered nurse, has become a licensed minister and recently began working with the Parents Healing Together support group at University Hospital. She said the positions give her the opportunity to reach out to those experiencing loss.
She believes her tragedies directed her to her calling.
"I believe things happen for a reason," Dunn said. "God wanted me to help others."
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