As always it is so sad to listen and read of so many grandparents going through the heartbreak of estrangement.

Many find it so hard to see any light at the end of the tunnel, everything seems so hopeless, a life without their grandchildren is hard to bare.

It, as we know is a living bereavement, and so we are grieving.

Grandparents who are in the early stages of this grief find it impossible to believe that they can fully function as they once did.

After 10 1/2 years of our estrangement I can tell you that you do function again, just not quite in the same way. We all find our own way.

The sadness that engulfes grandparents prevents them seeing anything good in their lives, they go from day to day, feeling empty and incomplete.

Individuals who used to be able to see the funny side of life, now feel they can’t smile or have a laugh.

Everybody knows that being able to join others in laughing just makes us feel better. I was out with some friends recently and we were laughing about something, no idea what now, and as we were leaving an elderly gentleman came up to me and said, ” Thank you, I haven’t heard such laughter in a very long time. You have lifted my spirit.”

What a strong message that is.

It seems as though when we are facing our loss, we think we mustn’t enjoy any part of life, anymore, our lives have come to an end.

Every person you meet along this life of ours will have sadness in their hearts for all sorts of reasons, but that sadness needs to be packed away in our storage box.

We have all been given this gift of life, and we all have to ride the roller coaster that it is, but we mustn’t forget, that however things may be, we have great deal to be grateful for.

If permission is needed, I give you all permission to start to laugh again, laugh at ourselves, laugh with friends, laugh to make someone else smile.

Jane.