Create to Heal

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Using Creativity to heal through pet bereavement and create long term mental well-being strategies

Welcome to ‘Create to Heal’; My project to help those going through or soon to be going through pet loss or pet bereavement to heal through the power of creative writing and develop long term coping strategies for your mental well-being. 

 

Hi, I’m Rochelle – A neurospicy, chronically ill, writer and human-animal bond specialist on a mission to help those who are facing pet loss or pet bereavement get the support they need, understanding that isn’t found elsewhere and open the door to finding the magic of creativity; in particular, creative writing. 

 

I believe strongly in having a ‘why’ for everything I undertake in life as it is a strong foundation to build upon and can guide you when you lose your way. 

My ‘Why’ for Accomplishing ‘Create to Heal’

I have been where you are now and if I’m honest, I’m still going through the healing process four years on. In November 2018 I lost my ‘Doggy Soulmate’ Vader, a black Labrador with a big heart and goofy personality who created a bond with me like no human ever has. I have no shame in admitting, had it not been for him, I wouldn’t be here today; He saved me many times with his instincts and intelligence but his presence in my life kept me going through a previous dark relationship into my life changing when I was diagnosed with multiple chronic illnesses in 2012 and beyond. 

His decline in health was a shock, it was sudden, it took a matter of hours for him to be my devoted, larger than life love-bug to not being able to walk and laying in a blanket on the top of our stair-case. Giving him the compassion and selflessness that he had given me, was the ultimate full circle in our ten years story together. I had to dig the deepest within myself I ever had to, to muster up the strength to say “Until we meet again”.

In the days and weeks after he found his own rainbow, I was nothing short of a wreck but I needed to carry on because we have two boys who were young at the time who had to cope at their stages with the change too. In researching pet bereavement and helping children cope, I noticed that it was still very much a taboo subject and that any books I found to read to with them were very emotionless and treated kids like they were lesser. 

That’s when I came up with my own way of telling them and had the idea of turning it into a children’s book that could help all the family have moments of healing together. 

My first self-published children’s book “How to Rest on a Rainbow” came to life and was released, in dedication and honour to Vader in December 2020 and I started training to become a Pet Bereavement Counsellor but I prefer the term Animal-Bond Specialist.

Here’s something you need to know right now…

I want to help you from the start of our journey, our paths have crossed from this page and I invite you to consider starting your healing with me, right now. 

Grief hits us in ways we may not expect, it truly is an ‘ebb and flow’ process, so whether your loss is recent, imminent or happened in the past, I want to listen, to understand your experience and situation and help you sit with those feelings and guide you through the beginnings of healing. 

Society may be making you feel like the level of grief you are experiencing for the loss of your furry family member is unnecessary, untoward and even juvenile. This is unfortunately, a common experience with pet bereavement but I’m here to tell you that it couldn’t be more wrong. You absolutely valid in your grief, for many of us it’s like losing a child and best friend all at once and it would never be seen as unnecessary or ridiculous to grieve a child. It is of the same level no matter what society at large will tell you. 

There are a lot of myths around pet bereavement and grief and the realities really are very different indeed. To support and give a helping hand before we start together, please read my page exposing some of the most common myths and realities of pet bereavement. 

Let’s Get Down to the Nuts and Bolts

I’ll take this opportunity to give you some information in hopes of answering any questions you may have about this project:

I want to make this clear from the get-go, I am not going to be a stereotypical “Counsellor”; I won’t use buzz words or phrases and there will never be any judgement passed. I want to firstly, hear your sadness and work through the initial stages of your grief and then progress to helping you build new habits, find some self-love and confidence within and work together to re-build and re-work routines. 

I want to be your safe space to be authentically you. I want to endeavour to make any 121 time together more of a friendly conversation rather than a session with a ‘professional’. I want to hear your memories and stories of life with your furry family member as and when you are ready and understand the bond you created as it’s truly unlike any other connection we make and they are all unique. 

Writing about painful experiences can be key in a recovery process. We will do this gently in the form of prompts both in call with me so I can support you and with PDF workbooks with different types of exercises along with advice and breathwork practices to help with anxieties in the more difficult moments. 

Creative writing is powerful and you don’t have to be good with words for it to help. Nothing you write down will be graded or reviewed, the aim isn’t to produce something publish worthy but to show you different ways to work through your feelings. 

  • It allows you to cope with the feelings you have each day
  • It aids you in building new healthy habits to adopt for all areas of life
  • It can help with the adaptions, changes and new routines at this time
  • The prompts we will work with will help you establish your support system, build self-love and confidence and allow you to have compassion to self 
  • It shows you how you can tackle and process feelings in a healthy way and renew your spirit and sense of self

‘Create to Heal’ has three different package options allowing you to choose which level is best for your situation and how much support you feel you require. 

All packages will be over a six-week period. 

What you receive will therefore, be different depending on the package you choose. 

Each package involves a different amount of 121 time with me as I feel this can be a really useful part of the process and didn’t want anyone to miss out on this part. 

Each 121 will be a duration of 60 mins and this will be broken down to make things a little more manageable:

We will begin with a 5-10 minute “Free Flow” to release immediate anxiety and tensions and get us into the correct headspace for the session. This will be your time to let your hand guide you across a sheet of paper either doodling, scribbling random words or venting to music. We will then do a little meditation or breathwork and a little stretch in whatever way is good and comfortable for you. 

Next, we will go into a 30-minute talk-time allowing you to have a chat with me about how things are feeling, ask any questions, tell me what you’re finding difficult but also, I want us to discuss what positives you’ve had in the time between sessions. 

Lastly, we will bring in the creative writing element giving you an opportunity to work through somethings we have discussed in our talk-time and explore with some prompts that I will provide. This also means I will be there for support should you feel triggered or things become difficult. 

Let’s Get Down to the Nuts and Bolts

Three options depending on what level of support you require.

Option 1
What you get:

1 x 30min introduction call before we start together

1 x 121 support call (Duration 60 mins) with me

1 week of 121 support and advice through my ‘Voxer’ chat space (Mondays and Thursdays only)

3 weeks of writing packets to help you work through your grief and explore within filled with prompts, creative ideas and breathwork exercises to help at each stage (You will receive every 2 weeks via email)

Payment options:

1 off payment of £240

2 Instalments of £120

4 instalments £60

Option 2
What you get:

1 x 30min introduction call before we start together

3 x 121 support calls (Duration 60 mins) with me (1 call fortnightly)

3 weeks of 121 support and advice through my ‘Voxer’ chat space (Mondays and Thursdays only)

6 weeks of writing packets to help you work through your grief and explore within filled with prompts, creative ideas and breathwork exercises to help at each stage (You will receive every week via email)

Payment options:

1 off payment of £470

2 Instalments of  £235

4 instalments £117.50

Option 3
What you get:

1 x 30min introduction call before we start together

6 x 121 support calls (Duration 60 mins) with me (1 call fortnightly)

6 weeks of 121 support and advice through my ‘Voxer’ chat space (Mondays and Thursdays only)

6 weeks of writing packets to help you work through your grief and explore within filled with prompts, creative ideas and breathwork exercises to help at each stage (You will receive every week via email)

Payment options:

1 off payment of £650

2 Instalments of  £325

4 instalments £162.50

I understand that everyone has different budgets and fiscal challenges. If you require my help but want to talk about different instalment options please contact me to discuss. 

Please note that overall prices are non-negotiable.

I’d love for you to allow me to guide you in navigating your grief and being a pal to support you as you create to heal.