I was lucky to have been born into a family of readers; bibliophilia is a genetic condition for us. Grannie used to tell me that ever since childhood she felt that she needed nothing else for happiness but a book and some bread and butter. I've always loved that image.
He sighed again, and there was something of an apology in it. "I am sorry you have to do this," he told me. I pulled my phone from my pocket and called the vet. He said to come whenever I am ready. I said "a few hours," to give the kids time for their goodbyes.
It's been 32 years since you left the earth and Mother's Day is still so hard for me. I was 24 years young when you died. Although I was an adult, I was still young enough to need you. And I still need you today. I wonder every day how different my life would be if you were here.
To make room for loss, do what you can to open your heart and breathe the breath of life. The more you fill your heart with love and appreciation, the more space you make for healing and growth. Here are eight ideas:
Nestled in suburban Kansas City, the Vikings of Shawnee Mission West High School are a tight, supportive community. That strong foundation of community ushered the students through the separate events of four deaths during the school year when I was the principal.
For those suffering like I am, I hope knowing my experience will let you know you're not alone. What others call courage may simply be a barricade erected by your mind to help you keep it all together while supporting your loved ones, and that's OK. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise.
The holiday season can be a particularly difficult time for bereaved individuals because it is supposed to be a celebratory occasion when family and friends come together with great joy... But for those in mourning, it often brings home the realization that things will never be the same.
My husband and I were having one of our usual arguments when we heard a thud from our bedroom closet. Figuring it was our daredevil cat up to his usual mischief, I got up to see what heavy object Derrick had decided to knock off a shelf this time.
It's been 19 months since Mom died. As I reflect on the weeks and months following Mom's suicide, I realize how precariously my life hung in the balance. Back then I couldn't envision a day when the color, focus, or meaning would return to my world.
The inadequacy of words that console is exacerbated when a child takes his or her own life. It's a loss that adds the additional burdens of unbearable remorse and unanswered questions to already grieving parents; the general ambiguity heightens the pain and prolongs the grieving process.
Jumping at one's own shadow is a perfect metaphor for living with post-traumatic stress disorder. A darkness that sets up permanent camp in your peripheral vision and won't go away, no matter how much sage you burn, or how many gods you pray to.
I detest the news. In fact, the news has become so frightening to me, especially now that I have a son, that I often avoid it. I know it's not the responsible, civic thing to do, but sometimes, it's the only way I stay sane.
Was I scared to leave a steady paycheck, long-term boyfriend, friends and family to travel the world for a month with a lifesize cutout of my late father? ABSOLUTELY. Do I regret doing it? Absolutely not.
This is the one gem of light in the otherwise torturous loss of a loved one. Being conscious of this gift, allowing it and remembering it (for yourself and others) could be life changing during grieving, so spread the word.
This graduation is bittersweet for me, as Emily's father I have watched many of you grow up to become the fine young men and women you now are. I see you and wonder what she would be like and the adventures she would be on.