Grief in wake of brother’s death turned into book

Tabitha's book tells how she coped with the pain of Peter's death
Tabitha's book tells how she coped with the pain of Peter's death
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THE overwhelming grief which Tabitha Jayne felt will never leave her.

In 2002, she was given the devastating news that her brother, Peter Cameron, had been killed in a car crash as he travelled from Glasgow to his home in Gifford, East Lothian. He was just 17 years old.

At the time, Tabitha, now 32, was helpless as she struggled to deal with her loss.

Ten years on she is a very different person, empowered by her experience and dedicated to helping others. She has now channelled everything she’s learned over the last decade into a book which aims to help others who have been bereaved understand and come to terms with grief.

Tabitha, who lives in Haddington, became interested in the way grief affects people and went on to set up a bereavement charity in the wake of her brother’s death.

Her first publication, Thriving Loss: Move Beyond Grief to a Place of Peace, Passion and Purpose, was issued by self-publishing company Balboa Press last month. Around 200 copies have been sold so far.

Tabitha said: “The reason I decided to write the book is that we still have a lot of myths surrounding grief that aren’t particularly helpful to people who are grieving. I really wanted to offer people a new perspective and some strategies that can help them move through grief and let go of the pain”

As well as featuring Tabitha’s story, the book includes input from 20 other women around the world who have lost a loved one but who, like Tabitha, have managed to turn their grief into something positive. “I’m left with nothing but a deep sense of love and gratitude for my brother and there’s no pain, which I didn’t think was possible when it happened,” she said.

Peter, known as Pedro, was driving home after a gig in Glasgow with friends when his car crashed into a lamppost in the Robroyston area, killing him instantly. The former Knox Academy pupil was a gardener for East Lothian Council.

Tabitha discovered a lack of bereavement counselling tailored towards young people after Peter’s death and, along with family and his friends, set up The Pedro Project in 2003 which ran for six years and helped young people in Edinburgh affected by bereavement.

Tabitha’s efforts to help others cope with grief put her in line for a national award in 2006 when she made the final ten nominees – from more than 16,000 entries – for the first ever Heroine category in Cosmopolitan magazine’s Fun Fearless Female Awards.

Tabitha added: “People have been able to take a tragic experience and turn it into something positive. My greatest wish is that we could all do this because by being able to transform our grief, we let go of the pain and that can be something quite profound.”

The book is available online at {http:// www.bookstore.balboapress.com|www.bookstore.balboapress.com|www.bookstore.balboapress.com} or on Amazon for around £11.