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Harvard

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Dear Ones,

I’m so glad it is Spring! I’m spending more time outdoors because I’m training for another half- marathon.

On March 30, my heart skipped more than a few beats when I spoke at the 2017 Harvard Medical School’s writing & publishing conference. I shared a bit about my journey, and talked about resilience. I am indebted to Dr. Julie Silver for her generous invitation. I’m also grateful for the ongoing support from the doctors (who attended the conference), and a handful of us are meeting later this month.

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FitBloggin’ & My Podcast With Kimberly Snyder

Deepak Chopra MD with me in New York City - June 8, 2016

 Deepak Chopra, MD, FACP & Kristin Meekhof – New York City, June 8, 2016

Dear Friends,

I’m excited to share with you that I will be sharing I.L.L.U.M.I.N.A.T.E. – 10 Pillars For Overcoming Any Setback at the annual Fitbloggin’ conference. During a June podcast with New York Times best- selling author Kimberly Snyder, I spoke about I.L.L.U.M.I.N.A.T.E. and how integrating even one of the pillars will open the door to abundance.

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Live Happy & Illuminate

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Greetings from Michigan

As some of you know, I wrote a piece about the healing power of gratitude in the new book, “Live Happy: Ten Practices for Choosing Joy” by Deborah Heisz (Harper Elixir, 2016). This month, I also had the pleasure of speaking with Deborah  during a Live Happy podcast. We talked about finding purpose and joy after any loss.

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Interview with Kristin Meekhof

Kristin Meekhof was interviewed by Super fab magazine and talks about the physical effects of grief in general and then discusses how her own lost impacted her health. Interview is in this link.

Can you die of a broken heart? At first, this might sound like a song title or dramatic story line. In actuality, there is such a thing as broken heart syndrome and author Kristin Meekhof knows it all too well. [Read More]

ABC Headquarters – New York City-

On September 17, I was honored to be the guest for Dr. Richard Besser’s live one hour tweet chat. Dr. Besser is the Chief Medical Director and Editor at ABC World News. Several months ago, I proposed that we tweet about the physical effects of grief. This piece, Can You Die Of A Broken Heart?, that I wrote for Psychology Today explains the impetus for this topic.

Many of you participated and I am grateful for your support. The American Psychiatric Association, St. Jude for Reserach, Jefferson Hospital, Gundersen Health, American Greetings (card company), Dr. Lisa Gualtieri, U.S. National Library of Medicine, Liz Neprorent, Modern Widow’s Club, Cook Children’s, Seleni Institute, Pregnancy Death and Infant Death Alliance, University Pittsburgh Medical Center, Amy Morin LCSW, Dr. Alok Patel, Beaumont Health System, Rainbows 4 Children, Dr. Kathleen Rehl were just some of the participants.

Some of the topics we talked about were: the stages of grief, healthy ways to cope, broken heart syndrome, where to get help, how children grieve.

The transcript from the tweet chat is here.

The Parliament of World Religion

I’m honored to be a panelist at The Parliament of World Religion. On October 17, I will be on a panel with the esteemed Professor Robert Thurman. Professor Thurman is an author, speaker, co-founder of The Tibet House, and Time magazine named him one of the 25 most influential people in America.

The Dalai Lama, Dr. Jane Goodall, Marianne Williamson, Krista Tippet, Dr. Karen Armstrong, Dr. Eboo Patel are just some of the keynote speakers. 10K people, 80 Nations, 50 Faiths—I hope to see you there!

Gratitude and Grief: Kristin’s ThankList

When we launched the ThankList, we knew that we would likely hear compelling stories of gratitude from others. Once the concept of a ThankList is explained, it’s hard not to start creating the mental list of those who have had an impact on our lives. But the outpouring of support for our mission and desire from our fan base for their stories and voices to be heard has been truly humbling.

One of those conversations revealed a compelling, inspiring story that we wanted to share here with you.

In 2007, Kristin Meekof’s husband Roy was diagnosed with advanced stage adrenal cancer. Yet somehow, despite the grim prognosis and enduring an aggressive treatment schedule, Kristin found Roy not only accepting of his diagnosis, but relishing in moments of gratitude for the life he’d been given.

He never said, “Why me?”. Instead, he said, “Why not me?”

Despite being widowed at age 33 only 8 weeks after his initial diagnosis, it was Roy’s open heart and attitude of gratitude that has stayed with her. She says that he taught her that gratitude is the answer to nearly every question. Inspired by both his spirit and her ability to turn something tragic into something beautiful, we had a few questions we wanted to ask about Roy and his legacy.

Q: Tell us a little about your husband Roy.

Kristin: Roy was a middle school teacher, a veteran, and a gentle soul. My husband lived with an open heart and very much believed in living in the light, literally and figuratively. Before we were married we exchanged gratitude lists with each other via email, so thankfulness wasn’t something foreign to him. It was part of his being.

{Gratitude when you are diagnosed with terminal cancer

is bringing light out of a very dark well.

In this light of gratitude is the place that he dwelled. }

 

Q: Do you think he knew how he changed you? Did you ever get to say thank you?

Kristin: I would like to think that he knew that his presence, our marriage, our friendship changed me, but I don’t know if he knew how deep it was. Since we were in the habit of exchanging gratitude lists, something we started before we were married, I did say thank you.

And since my late husband’s death, I make it a point to give a handwritten thank you cards to my dear friends because their kindness matters to me. It is important to put these things in writing and thank you cards are a beautiful gesture of kindness.

Q: How has your life changed because of his perspective?

Kristin: With gratitude comes an openness and a sense of bravery. About three years ago, I decided that I wanted to co-write a book for widows of all ages, and I interviewed many widows about their experiences. The widows were incredibly generous with their time and thoughts and for each of them I am eternally grateful. It is all bittersweet because the impetus for this research and book is loss, but gratitude made it possible. Gratitude opened the door for this book project and as a result I’ve formed some incredible friendships.

Q: If you could speak to him today, what would say?

Kristin: I would tell him that I still think of him daily and continue to love him. I would thank him for teaching me that gratitude is the answer to nearly every question.

I think he would be surprised to know that I co-wrote a book, and then I’d explain that I decided to write the book for widows so that they would feel less alone. Then, I would talk about all of the beautiful people who helped me with this three year project, and some of the gorgeous opportunities that I’ve been given.

Kristin is a Huffington Post contributor and co-author of the book A Widow’s Guide to Healing: Gentle Support and Advice for the First 5 Years. As a part of her dedication to helping grieving widows around the world, she’s traveled to Kenya with a charity organization.

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