Angie Corbett-Kuiper graduated from college from NMSU with a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Marketing. It was at NMSU where she met her first husband. Upon graduation in 1987 she began her corporate career with Xerox Corporation. In 1989 she was married, had two boys, still continued to work for corporate America but changed directions to the medical and scientific world of biopharmaceuticals.
Angie has always loved science, and now she was working for the largest research and pharmaceutical companies in the world, including Bayer Healthcare. For 21 years Angie thrived on learning new therapies for very rare disease states and partnered with her physicians in helping patients manage their diagnosis. It was imperative for her to thoroughly understand scientific and medical data to offer value when working with physicians and their ancillary staff.
On June 1, 2011, two years after her divorce from her first husband of twenty years, she met who became her second husband, Dr. Johannes Jacob Kuiper who specialized as a Heart Failure Cardiologist at Baylor University Medical Center, in the Transplant Department in Dallas, TX.
Johannes (Jan) and Angie were engaged on Sunday, September 2011 on the top of La Luz Trail on the Sandia Mountain hilltop where he proposed to her as he opened a bottle of wine to celebrate. Jan and Angie were completely and deeply in love.
On March 31, 2015, Angie’s first-born son, Nicholas Max Corbett, twenty years old, took his life.
The death of her son changed Angie for life. There is not a word or a way to describe the tremendous grief of losing a child. Days she couldn’t get up. She didn’t remember to eat. She lost 10 pounds in the matter of a week. Questions, guilt, pain, suffering all flooded her mind and took over her entire being.
Angie was grateful for Jan. Jan was so instrumental in helping her navigate the pain of grief and loss.
It was after several months and the most painful moments she had ever experienced in her life when Jan asked her, “What do you want to do?” He did not want her going back into “Big Pharma,” which was merely a job.She had never thought about it before. She always just did what she was “supposed” to and what she “needed to” do to provide for her family. Happiness, as she was raised, was selfish.
On April 16, 2016, Jan and Angie were married.
It was a fairy tale surprise wedding which began celebrating his 50th Birthday and ended in “I do.” Surrounded by their closest family, friends, and peers from Baylor. As her younger son, Zach, walked her down the aisle, Angie so wished Nick were there to celebrate with them. He would have loved this party.
The evening was a black and white Rat-Pack themed Frank Sinatra celebration with all of their friends, family, peers, and ancillary staff from Baylor. It was truly a fairy tale wedding.
On April 25th, nine days after their wedding, Angie received a text message from Jan’s partner at Baylor wondering if she had seen Dr. Kuiper. She knew something was terribly wrong.
Jan had taken his life.
Not only one, but now two suicides in a little more than a year’s time. She didn’t know what to do. She felt so alone, found herself crying uncontrollably and spent more time under her covers eating gallons of ice cream than she found herself vertical. “Why?” She asked. “Why me?” She was in such pain and did not understand why this was happening.
She knew she needed to do something or she, too, could have very easily and quickly fallen into the grave with her son and now brand-new husband.
It was through deep meditation, counseling, following paths that were presented and not judging any of them.
She made the decision that Nick’s and Jan’s choices would not define her. Angie decided to share her story via seminars, workshops, radio shows, and retreats. She shares what continues to work for her in hopes of offering pearls for others who may find themselves struggling with the painful grief and loss of a loved one.
Death changed Angie. From that point on, in between the painful grieving process and then deciding what she would do with this huge wrinkle in her life, she chose to continue to help others begin to realize who they are and to die to themselves before they found themselves confronted with death.
After returning home Angie took a nine month reprieve from life to sit still. It was after a meditation before bed when she put the intention out to the universe asking, “What am I supposed to do with this?” She woke in the middle of the night with her question answered… “Boldness in Death!”
Significant events transpired when she brought a team together to embark on what she thought she had been called to do. The trip leveled her, but she realized that it was because she was not following what she was called to do. She realized she was instead following what she thought she should do.
Angie’s purpose and passion are to guide others to embrace death as a part of life, not as separate from it.
These two deaths forced her to look outside of her self-limiting beliefs about everything, and in so doing she was able to find a better and more joyful way of living life every day with the simple understanding that we are only guaranteed this single breath, and since we don’t know when our loved ones may die, it is imperative we treat them with love, compassion, and kindness so we do not live in regret, remorse, confusion, guilt, shame, and blame. Angie has learned to love and live…differently.
Angie speaks around the world. She is writing books and is host of her hit radio show “Beyond Proof Radio” on The Transformation Talk Radio Network with Dr. Pat Baccili. She interviews guests around the world who support her mission in changing the way in which we view death, loss, and grief. She hopes to restore an optimism by sharing a different perspective which offers an uplifting, light, and positive approach to those who are willing to keep an open mind to anything and everything.
Her mission is to offer guidance to those desiring to explore beyond current self-limiting beliefs surrounding death, grief, and loss to include science, metaphysics, and spirituality which support that our bodies are merely shells of our soul.
Only through significant loss has Angie truly begun to live.
Don’t cry that it’s over; smile that it happened.
It seems impossible right now, but you can move forward from the tremendous pain of loss to finding a different way to incorporate your loved one into your daily life. It takes a choice, a present-moment awareness and an open mind. It is so much more rewarding than what we’ve been taught about death.
We will never get over grief, instead we will spend the rest of our life going through it. But it is possible to live a different way of life with our loved one. A unique kind of path that through my own experience has brought me significant joy in between the bouts of deep pain and grief.
I am on my own journey from bone-crushing grief – losing both my son and my husband to suicide within one year – to a comforting place of not only being grateful for what I had with them but also creating a new way in which to live with both. My approach is different and provides a wonderful lightness and peace.
Who am I?
It wasn’t until after the suicide deaths of my beautiful son and second husband, lover, and soulmate that I found out who I really was. Before, I was simply a cumulation of the labels and roles which I allowed to define me:
Mother of two
Successful Fortune 500 business woman
20-year career in biopharmaceuticals
Survivor of my oldest son’s suicide
Widow at the age of 52
I have chosen to not be defined by these roles, but by what I have learned and how I have grown from each.
People continually ask me, ‘how can you be doing so well, and living so joyously when most who’ve experienced such loss would curl up in the fetal position until they die themselves?’
The joy I’ve been able to find in life, despite living with such loss, is the reason that I feel I have been called to share my own experiences and how I have navigated through each.
I see so many people paralyzed, just surviving day-to-day in fear, guilt, shame, and loss, existing only to please others; parents, friends, family, religion, teachers, etc. There were certain periods of my life when I too experienced the same, finding myself very alone, judged, ridiculed, and completely abandoned. It was only through significant loss that I learned to stop giving away my power in this way.
To become who I am, I had to let go of everything I thought I was.
My life's work is to not only share my story but to be an example to others to live each day as if it is our last. Live each day as if our loved one will be gone, because they just might. For we are only guaranteed this single breath.
Although I lost significantly, I feel that I showed each and every single day how much I loved them and how important they were to me, so that when they did choose to leave this earth, I did not feel regret, guilt, or shame.
This path that I have chosen has not been an easy journey. It has been laden with hurt, sorrow, and pain; more tears than I can count.
It wasn't until I began living my truth that I began to experience pure and simple joy. Not only in life but also in the face of death.
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I invite you to join Me…
Have you lost a loved one to death? Are you curious and willing to keep a very open mind? Are you ready to move beyond grief and not get sucked back into the sometimes addictive cycle of anger, denial, bargaining, and depression?
There is another way.
It is very different, and I promise you will never view death in the same light.
I bring humor and a sense of lightness to working with loss. I do not judge the journey. I give people permission to cry and feel their intimate pain, rather than self-medicate to avoid it.
My background working in bio pharmaceuticals first made me a skeptic. I’m used to statistical analysis, weighing the numbers and arguments and looking for evidence to support claims. However, my experiences have taught me that it is necessary to utilize both sides of our brains, the analytical left-brain as well as the intuitive and creative right-brain.
Through my own experiences, I wish to change the current self-limiting beliefs, taboo and stigma of death to one of acceptance, understanding, and ultimately joy in this aspect of our lives as well. I continue to share my experiences and those of others and how they have helped me live death in a very different light.
Death can either kidnap us where we will join the walking dead, or it can be the catalyst for significant change in our life. It is ultimately a choice.
When we begin to live in the present moment, and not care what others think of us our mindset changes. We create a new way of thinking not only about death but life as well.
We are given evidenced-based proof and not just wishful thinking. When we open our mind, body, and spirit to all of the senses we've been given we learn to feel our new relationship. We will feel cold, breezes, goosebumps, hot flashes. We might smell a favorite perfume or cigar smoke when there is no source to be found.
We learn to stop rationalizing away our experiences and simply be grateful for their presence.
It is in keeping a child-like curiousity and a very open mind to appreciate that our loved ones are knocking at our door. They are waiting for us to invite them in. At first it might be difficult. We simply don't recognize them without their earthly skin suits.
The pain of grief and loss is an intense, intimate, and human emotion. One that promises to bury us with our loved ones if we aren’t careful. Suffering, however, is a choice.
My purpose is to share my own experiences to show that through choice, present moment-awareness, and most of all keeping an open mind that our loved ones are never gone. They’re just hidden from view.