Grief and LossGrief
is the normal emotional and physical response we have to loss. And loss can come in a variety of forms: the death of a loved one, the effects of illness, the stress of job change, the aftermath of children leaving home, the loss of a pet, divorce and even as the result of retirement. Each time there is a change in our lives, whether good or bad, we must leave certain things behind. This can result in feelings of loss and grief. At Grief and Loss Services, our mission is to provide support as you make this difficult journey.
Anyone can make a referral to Grief and Loss and may contact the program to schedule a consultation at no charge. If you or a loved one are receiving services from Sentara RMH Hospice, please follow this link
Grief and Loss Services is located 644 University Boulevard, Harrisonburg. The Coordinator is Nancy Shomo, BSW, GC-C who can be contacted by calling 540-433-4427 or 877-294-5731, ext. 4427. If no one is available at the time of your call, you may leave a confidential message. You may also communicate via e-mail to NJSHOMO@sentara.com
Help for those Who Comfort: Resolve Through Sharing, now known as RTS promotes an interdisciplinary approach for working with grieving families who have experienced a pregnancy loss from the moment their baby dies through the period of grieving.
Sentara RMH employee, Nancy J Shomo, BSW, GC-C is trained and certified as RTS Coordinator and is prepared to train healthcare professionals or anyone who comes into contact with parents experiencing the loss of a baby during pregnancy or shortly after birth.
This comprehensive one-day program provides insights, knowledge and hands-on experience to gain the skills necessary to interact with families experiencing perinatal loss. Participants hear directly from parents who have experienced a perinatal loss as well as from professionals who care for these families. Other topics include grief theory, interdisciplinary approaches, creating memories, follow-up procedures and strategies for intervention. Each participant receives perinatal bereavement resources and standards of care for pregnancy loss, stillbirth and newborn death.
Seminar rates: $75.00 per person; for more information or to schedule a training for your facility, contact:
Nancy J Shomo, BSW, GC-C
Coordinator, Grief and Loss Service
Sentara RMH Behavioral Health
2010 Health Campus Drive
Harrisonburg, Va. 22801
Educational Workshops and Seminars and Support Groups
Grief and Loss Services also offers educational workshops, bereavement training and educational seminars to the general public. If you would like to schedule a workshop, seminar or speaking engagement, please contact Grief and Loss Services.
Click here for a listing of our workshops, screenings and support Groups.
- Bereaved Parents Memorial Tree Service
- Annual Remembrance Service
All special events are free and open to anyone who would like to participate.
Frequently Asked Questions About the Grieving Process
What are some symptoms of grief?
- Tightness in the throat
- Heaviness in the chest
- Rapid heartbeat
- Change in sleep patterns
- Increased sensory awareness
- Changes in appetite
- Numbness, shock
- Feelings of being lost
- Intense Sadness
How Can I Provide Support to the Bereaved?
- Feelings of closeness to God
- Searching for meaning
- Anger at God
- Increase of fear
- Strengthening of Faith
- Fostering of personal growth
- Questioning one's faith
- Redefining relationship with God
There are practical things you can do to assist:
- send cards or flowers
- prepare food, provide childcare
- mow the lawn, assist with housework, provide transportation
You may also consider the following when providing for the bereaved:
- Stay Connected. Sometimes, the grieving person does not want to talk or listen, nor do they want you to talk or listen. They simply want you to be there for them.
- Allow the individual grieving the full range of their emotions.
- Be patient and understanding. LISTEN. Don’t claim to know how the other person is feeling. You don’t have answers. Keep in mind that we have two ears and one mouth for a reason.
- Allow reminiscing, repeated story-telling.
- Acknowledge special dates, events, holidays.
- When in doubt, never underestimate the power of a hug.