New Wellness Cruise Concept Attracts Baby Boomers and Others Who Are Grieving

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Nationally known grief expert, Edy Nathan, MA, LCSW, targets Carnival and the sea for “Turning Grief into Grace” Healing Cruises.

“This cruise concept for the bereaved is the first cruise of its kind that will attract those who are grieving. It will arm them with life-enhancing tools in an idyllic, healing atmosphere at sea.

Nationally known grief expert and former A & E Television personality, Edy Nathan, MA, LCSW, believes she has created a much needed niche in the field of grieving and bereavement, which is good news for the 80+million baby boomers in the U.S. today, many of whom will have (or already have) lost parents, spouses, or children. Factoring into the grief equation those who suffer from grief due to major personal financial loss, jobs, the trauma of war, relationships, divorce, or dealing with health issues, the number significantly increases as people search for the right tools to help them cope and come to terms with their loss and pain.

Nathan is hosting a series of “Turning Grief into Grace” concept cruises that she hopes will give people, especially Baby Boomers and retirees, an opportunity to combine the healing powers of being at sea with interactive workshops to give them insight and coping mechanisms into the many phases of grief. Heightening the cruise experience for participants will be the opportunity to mingle with like-minded people who share your pain and are navigating their own paths of the grief process.

Ultimately, she hopes the four-night, five day experience will give people a better understanding of how our society has changed its beliefs about the process of grieving. Over the past few decades, researchers are redefining how grief exists in our cultural make-up. It is important to understand that the overall meaning of when grief occurs and who it touches has changed significantly.

In fact, a May 27 USA Today article speaks of “unresolved grief that can be a hidden health risk factor” according to experts. The article goes on to speak about a new Institute of Gerontology at the University of Georgia research project to find out how loss impacts health and what to do about it. Grief is in our daily lives: We have Big G’s and little G’s.

“Grieving is a personal and highly individual experience. How you grieve depends on many factors, including your personality and coping style, your life experience, your faith, and the nature of the loss,” says Nathan. “The grieving process takes time. Healing happens gradually; it can’t be forced or hurried – and there is no “normal” timetable for grieving. Grief is like your fingerprint. It is as individual as you are! Some people start to feel better in weeks or months. For others, the grieving process is measured in years. Whatever your grief experience, it’s important to be patient with yourself and allow the process to naturally unfold.”

Nathan has developed a comprehensive support program that she will use on the cruise that will serve as a life tool for participants and includes a series of lectures, workshops and small group interactions.

Targeting the Port of Tampa for the first cruise on November 7, 2013, the intimate and stately 10-year old Paradise (Carnival) is the ideal small ship for the concept, as it is considered to have a “low key” atmosphere and the décor is not flashy as other Carnival ships, which is conducive to the type of group she hopes to target. Completely refurbished. If you or someone you care about is suffering from grief because of a major personal loss, wouldn’t it be better for them to seek out professional help in a unique setting such as the “Turning Grief into Grace Cruise?” It has been proven that coaching, counseling or guiding people through the grief process can help the person to deal in the best possible way. And if this results in this person being able to return to a productive, fulfilling and joy-filled lifestyle, wouldn’t it be worth it?

For more information about the Turning Grief into Grace Cruise, visit Edy’s website; or Vista Spiritual Center, or call Tawnee Sons at Cruise Planners/American Express, 954-306-9845.

Edy Nathan, MA, LCSW, is a licensed psychotherapist with over 20 years of experience specializing in the integration of psychotherapy and the world of spirituality. She holds a Masters from New York University and Fordham. Nathan has post-graduate training from the Ackerman Institute for Family Therapy, The Gestalt Center and the Jungian Institute. She is a certified EMDR practitioner, regression therapist and certified Hypnotherapist.

In her expertise as a grief therapist, she interweaves her formal training as a psychotherapist with her views on trauma, abuse, and death. She believes that everyone experiences grief throughout their lives. Grief is not just about the death of a loved one, but the losses we experience in life.

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