Honouring and Healing our Burden of Grief and Loss

Hosted by Ieleen Taylor MD CCFP, Sponsored by PFSP

May 25, 2022

A 90-minute session looking at grief and loss (the relevance, obstacles, sources, and consequences) with discussion and guidance through one way to reduce suffering and enhance well-being. This session will be led by Dr. Ieleen Taylor, MD CCFM. View Dr. Taylor’s bio.

“The expectation that we can be immersed in suffering and loss and not be touched by it, is as unrealistic as expecting to walk through water without getting wet. This sort of denial is no small matter. The way we deal with loss shapes our capacity to be present to life more than anything else. We burn out not because we don't care but because we don't grieve."    - Dr. Rachel Remen

Physicians and other health care providers are drowning in an ocean of suffering and a lot of us are wet. Our family, training, organizations, and culture have not taught us how to contend with grief. We are often left alone to cope. Unprocessed grief impacts our well-being, relationships, and patient care, contributing to burnout, unhealthy behaviours, and lack of joy in our lives. Grief work is supposed to be communal. Normalizing tending our grief, with others, those who get it is crucial. 

What’s involved:

  • A 90-minute session on Zoom where you are ‘on-camera’ with everyone else in the session to reinforce a sense of connection and community.
  • Commitment to confidentiality.
  • Guidance through:
    • related concepts;
    • reflection on how grief and loss impact you;
    • a simple ritual and exercise for honouring grief.
  • Physicians will participate in mindfulness and self-compassion activities, reflective writing, sharing narratives (voluntarily) and their experiences, with the opportunity for discussion.

This may be for you if you:

  • Are willing to acknowledge to yourself that grief and loss may be impacting you and you’re ready to explore it and take some time to do so.
  • Find what you’re doing is no longer working.
  • Feel alone.
  • Are interested in finding different ways of handling personal grief and loss or for supporting someone else in their experience of grief and loss.

It might not be a fit for you if you:

  • Are not ready/comfortable to look at your grief and loss right now. 
  • Generally prefer “head over heart” approaches.
  • Prefer to go around rather than through the discomfort this may bring up.

This session is not:

  • A vent session, nor therapy, nor a comprehensive process nor a quick fix. 
  • The arena to talk about the deepest, darkest struggles.

What you’ll need:

  • Zoom using both audio (headphones are helpful) and video. 
  • A dedicated quiet place where you will be relatively undisturbed. 
  • 5 simple objects like rocks, twigs, nuts, beans and a bowl of water . 
  • An item of comfort (a blanket, your pet, a special photograph, your favorite stuffy) to ground you as you explore any difficult feelings.
  • Pen and paper.

Time details: 7 - 8:30 p.m.
Location: virtual
Cost details: Free
Registration: Visit the event page to registerAfter registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.



Dr. Ieleen Taylor
About Dr. Ieleen Taylor 

Dr. Ieleen Taylor is a clinical lecturer for the University of Alberta and a family physician who has been serving the community of Sylvan Lake for over 20 years. She was the first female physician in Sylvan Lake where she spearheaded bringing learners to that community with that clinic becoming a rural site for a 1 month family medicine block.

Dr. Taylor has been pursuing her passion for wellness and personal development most notably through:

and dedication to practicing and sharing what she learns.

Notably, the Rural Alberta South Residency program (RAS) has adopted a Reflections in Medicine program that Dr. Taylor led them in developing and launching. For the Rural Alberta North (RAN) family medicine residents, she initiated, developed and implemented a customized structure for wellbeing groups.

Although born in the tropics, she has learned to embrace the Canadian winters with skiing, movies, and beach holidays.  She lives in the summer village of Jarvis Bay with her 4 almost grown-up girls and their furry friends.

The AMA advances patient-centered, quality care by advocating for and supporting physician leadership and wellness.