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Counselor Offers Resource on Coping with Loss

Bobbie Baker, director of counseling at Trinity Family Counseling Center, has written "Grief Reflections: A Quiet Book of Comfort."

Counselor Bobbie Baker has spent 15 years writing bereavement messages for the “Walk With Me” grief services that she coordinates for of Utica. With Grief Reflections: A Quiet Book of Comfort, her most pertinent messages are now available in book form.

“The goal is pretty self-explanatory,” Baker says of her 64-page book. “Bring a degree of comfort to people who have just experienced a loss in a very easy, simple, direct manner. It can be applied across the board to grief and loss, and comfort is available in the pictures and words.”

When Baker was choosing which messages to include in her book, she decided to focus on those concerning issues she felt were universal.

“Anger, crying, loss of a child, loss of a spouse, loss of a parent–those are universal things that everyone goes through,” Baker says. What does everyone need when going through the grieving process? “Listening. Empathy. Forget the clichés.”

Although Baker says she doesn’t really have a feeling about seeing Grief Reflections in print, she describes it as “very nice.”

“I see it as a legacy for my children and grandchildren,” she says. “I think it’s a statement, too, for senior citizens.”

But Baker’s literary contributions extend beyond Grief Reflections. She has contributed to the Ladies Home Journal article “Can This Marriage Be Saved?” and “Real Life Love” in Mademoiselle. In 2002 she was interviewed by Katie Couric on The Today Show in recognition of the fiftieth anniversary of “Can This Marriage Be Saved?”

Despite her new role as author, Baker is continuing “Walk With Me,” which is held for six sessions in each of the year’s four seasons at Trinity Family Counseling Center, a ministry of Baker is also the center’s director of counseling. She has been a fixture there since arriving as part of an internship project with the master’s counseling program at Oakland University, from which she earned her master of arts degree in 1986.

In the quarter century since, Baker has risen to being president of the Michigan Association of Marriage and Family Counselors (today she is a board member). What has kept her at Trinity? The counseling center has grown, the need for counseling has grown and, most importantly in her mind, the need for Christian counseling has grown.

“Oh my goodness, no,” Baker says, laughing when asked if she could have envisioned such accomplishments at the beginning of her career. “Never, never. They were all things that just occurred.”

Released July 11, Grief Reflections: A Quiet Book of Comfort is self-published. Copies of the book can be purchased online at amazon.com, authorhouse.com or barnesandnoble.com.

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