Grieving the Loss of Florence Leung
It is with great sadness and heavy hearts that we share the news of Florence Leung’s death. Many will have heard that the missing New Westminster mother was found, after an extensive search, in the water off of Bowen Island
. Reports say that Florence was suffering from postpartum depression and leaves behind a husband and 2.5 month old son.
Pacific Post Partum Support Society would like to extend their deepest sympathy to Florence’s family at this time. We are holding Florence and all of her family and friends in our hearts today, and sharing your grief. We hope that you can feel our collective thoughts and the light of the candles that were held high to guide Florence home. Your community stands with you now, as you move through your loss.
For those currently suffering from a postpartum mood disorder, we know that this event may be causing fear, worry, and anxiety. If you need help working through your feelings at this time please don’t hesitate to call the PPPSS support line at 604-255-7999 in the Vancouver area or toll free 855-255-7999.
Please remember that these sorts of tragic outcomes are extremely rare. In the aftermath of this devastating news there are some things you can do while processing:
Reach out for help. Talk to your family and friends, or call a support worker at PPPSS. If your own postpartum symptoms are being triggered or worsened don’t hesitate to call your doctor, counselor, or other health care professionals.
Make some space for your grief and be gentle with yourself in the coming days. You may find that the emotional impact temporarily affects your mood or causes depression and anxiety symptoms to worsen. Acknowledge that you are working through a very triggering event and know that any setbacks are only temporary.
Take a media fast if you need to. Sometimes the best thing to do is get off the internet and take a break from the news. You may consider unplugging for a few days until you can get your bearings again. This can be an excellent form of self care during challenging times.
Ramp up your self-care practice. Tragedy takes a toll on the mind and body, so it’s a good idea to pay extra attention to your self care. What might you do to calm yourself and re-center? It might be a good time for quiet, meditative activities–knitting, art, a bike ride, a long walk, a bath.
Find comfort in small rituals. Many people are helped by performing small rituals that acknowledge and release grief. Use whatever ritual fits into your life whether that’s meditation, prayer, writing, art therapy, or gathering with supportive friends and family.
Take care of yourself in the coming days and reach out for help wherever you need it.