In my own experience, both professionally and personally, crying is one of the body's ways to bring itself back to balance. It is not necessarily a sign of weakness or even sadness. Infants cry to communicate with their universe. New mothers cry... a lot. And so do the rest of us.
As I left church following yesterday's service, my heart was filled to overflowing with gratitude and joy. By Monday morning the warm glow of joy and celebration was only a memory as I looked at my schedule and my longer than normal to do list.
It was the first time I'd felt the full force of having lost Ed to Alzheimer's. The first time I'd cried about it. For in all those years, I'd never realized until right then just how much I'd loved Ed -- and loved him still.
The World Without You is a heart-searing, eye-tearing, and soul-touching novel about loss and resilience, family and individuals, and the enduring connections that bind us together, no matter how awful a wrenching we endure.
It is more than keeping their memory alive or remembering their birthdays... as important as these practices are; it is about sustaining the ideals, values and passions that they cared about so deeply.
As Mother's Day approaches, my stomach begins to ache. It's a familiar, if old pain, tucked away in my soul, born of the loss of my son, Dan, killed at the age of 22 while working as Reuters photojournalist in Somalia more than 17 years ago.