Welcome to The Good Grief Project

Stroud, 25th August 2015


Scroll back four and half to five years when these pictures were taken and we would have no idea (we not even be thinking about thinking) of the fate that would befall our family.  And in the weeks and months after he died we had no sense of where we would be now – about to board a plane for the Americas with a whole load of camera gear for a research and film making exercise that we would call The Good Grief Project.

But here we are and it’s with exhilaration and sadness that we embark on this journey.  Emotionally  I’m all over the place even if over the last few days my time has been taken up solidly with prepping and planning, packing and repacking, following up the last minute emails with our contributors.   All useful distractions from what feels like a pretty huge undertaking.  Even before Josh died, we had toyed with the idea of a ‘retirement gap’ year in which we would travel the world as a way of launching ourselves into the third stage of our lives.  But we did not envisage it like this – to journey for and with Josh yet without him.

Still we hope that you will travel with us, follow and enjoy our reports, and feed back with your own comments.   We will blog at least once a week, hopefully conveying some of the dramas from our travels- you know the kind of stuff where you do a whole interview only to find the camera wasn’t running or turning up in Salem Massachusetts when we’re supposed to be in Salem Virginia.

We must thank all our supporters who have generously contributed to our funding scheme and without which the project would not be happening.   The grants from the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust and The Jessica Mathers Trust formed the bedrock of the projects budget but over 70 individuals have now donated via the GOGETFUNDING page and for that we are immensely grateful.   As much as the cash it’s the thought that so many of you are behind us that means so much.   The confidence we gain from your trust is so important and we intend to repay it in full.

Very excited now about meeting and filming the first of our contributors in Sandy Hook this coming  weekend.   Sandy Hook High School you will remember was the scene of a mass shooting in December 2012.   On the chalkboard in his home in the days before he was murdered one of the ‘first graders’ had written (albeit phonetically) the words ‘nurturing’, ‘healing’, and ‘love’.  His mother is now on a mission to get an educational programme known as ‘social and emotional learning’ rolled out in schools across the country.   The debate around gun control isn’t really getting very far, she has told us and she is now putting her energies into helping teachers identify students who may feel isolated or bullied and to help them develop the social skills needed to resist a violent response.

Of all the stories  we will be exploring where bereaved parents have initiated projects as a way of remembering their child, this seems to be a hopeful starting point.

For a general overview of THE GOOD GRIEF PROJECT  see the ABOUT section of this blog


Thanks for reading


By |2018-02-14T15:05:53+00:00August 26th, 2015|Jane's, Jimmy's|11 Comments


  1. jobousfield 27th August 2015 at 9:42 am - Reply

    Bon Voyage Jane and Jimmy ! So excited for you. I will read all your words with great fervour ! love Jo B

  2. Claire Schimmer 27th August 2015 at 9:58 am - Reply

    Extraordinary journey in all senses of the word – I look forward to the first US installment…Claire x

  3. Jane Harris (@BeyondJaneH) 27th August 2015 at 10:01 am - Reply

    Thanks Jo B! Hard to believe we are finally on our road trip across America learning from the experiences of others about life after the death of a child.

  4. Jane Harris (@BeyondJaneH) 27th August 2015 at 11:13 am - Reply

    Appreciated Claire Schimmer…..we are nervous and excited in equal measure but most importantly inspired by all the amazing stories of survival and resilience that people are sharing with us. Thanks so much for all your support.

  5. Tee 27th August 2015 at 11:44 am - Reply

    I love love love this idea! More and more people are coming out and sharing their experiences and grief through blogs, articles and otherwise. I hope, too, that by next year I will have my blog set up about the social structures that keep our society locked into struggling with mortality.
    You know, I lost my mother and a few friends when i was young, I haven’t lost a child, but its my worst fear. Actually every night before I drift off to sleep I see my children dying. I jerk wide awake and have to repeat the whole falling asleep process again. It’s my fear of death visiting me daily. I pray that this leads to a life fully lived. Good luck on your journey! I will be stopping by regularly…

  6. Helen 27th August 2015 at 12:17 pm - Reply

    have an amazing, emotional, thoughtful and hopeful time … it will be extraordinary in the true sense of the word.. Am with you in spirit, as, I am sure, is our Joe, your Josh and of course all our lost children xxxxxxx

    • Jane Harris (@BeyondJaneH) 28th August 2015 at 12:56 am - Reply

      Thank you Helen Ford. We all know that we will love our children for as long as we live…… not as long as they live. Sorry we met under such tragic circumstances but so glad that we met! Thats the nature of grief isnt it…..so full of contradictions.
      All my love
      Jane x

  7. Susan MacKenzie 27th August 2015 at 2:52 pm - Reply

    Jane and Jimmy, looking forward to reading your postings about others who are also living after the impact of child-loss. Safe travels to you…

  8. Jane Harris (@BeyondJaneH) 28th August 2015 at 12:57 am - Reply

    Thanks Susanne to you and Andrew for all your support and kindness. x

  9. Bev 28th August 2015 at 10:41 am - Reply

    Good luck Jane, Jimmy AND Josh. I look forward to reading all about it and seeing the finished product(s) later. Xxxxx

  10. Maggie La Tourelle 1st September 2015 at 10:56 am - Reply

    Very touched by your project. I feel a part of me is with you. Wishing you an amazing journey.

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