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The shadows beside me

Boys at sunset, Naples '04

  While we (bereaved parents) are readjusting to our perception of what grief is, and who we are as we grieve, and how our relationship with our deceased child will be, grief changes and evolves, subsides and resurfaces. 

A mother’s words can be so black

These are a mother’s words: “Of all the daughters I could have had, why did God give me an ungrateful one like you? Everything I endured for you! How dare you! How dare you abandon me like this…” Then she tried guilt. “I’ll die if you go…” These timely words, from the […]

Save yourself

LifeSaver

Words that delivered In her memoir, Lucky, Alice Sebold said, “No one can pull anyone back from anywhere. You save yourself or you remain unsaved.” It is true. You have to save yourself (no one can pull you back from this place). You have to trust yourself. You have to be the expert […]

Willower, defined

We use the words widow, widower, and orphan, but there is no word in our vocabulary that identifies the bereaved parent. So I’ve coined the term willower. will·ow·er (wĭlʹō-ər) noun a. A bereaved parent.  b. A person whose child, or children, has died. c. A person that willows, or grieves the death of their child, or children: Each willower processes grief in […]

Grief is a gorilla

And now, grief is a gorilla. Massive, strong, solid, sometimes silent—it lies still and rests—and sometimes loud—it howls and beats its chest. It can be sluggish and clumsy or nimble and sharp. And, as if I am the dead one, grief holds me and shakes my lifelessness with puzzled eyes, […]

Dear Grief

My Questions… Dear Grief, There have been and still are times when I feel like this: I am hanging upside down in a body-sized tank of water, like Houdini, and I see and hear the world in a distorted and blurry, thick and muffled way. But at the same time […]