posted by on Child Loss, Sibling Loss, Stillbirth, Uncategorized

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I grew up going to Sunday School and reading the Bible and hearing stories about how great heaven was — no tears, no sickness, no night.  It sure did sound good to me, but it didn’t sound real.  In fact, a lot of nights I’d lay in bed and worry about dying.  I wondered if there really was a place called heaven or if it was just a made-up story — a fairytale told to make kids be good at night and fall asleep quicker.  “Dream of how happy heaven will be.  Just close your eyes and think about heaven.  You’ll fall asleep before you know it.”

When my thirteen-year-old sister died tragically, my world fell apart.  Literally.  Our family fell apart.  Literally.  And, suddenly God didn’t make sense any more.  How could a God who is good and who is so full of love allow a little girl to choke to death because her lungs wouldn’t allow enough air to go in?  We prayed, but God didn’t answer.   || Read more

posted by on Child Loss, Uncategorized

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When my son died I no longer knew who I was.  I was lost.  I felt as though half of me was missing.  I felt transparent to the world — like everyone could see right through me and see that my heart was broken and bleeding.  My mind raced and my tears flowed and I cried out to whoever would listen.  “Who am I? I don’t know who I am any more!”

And, the truth is that I really didn’t know who I was when my son died.  Was I Samuel’s mom?  Was I still a mother?  Was I an ex-mother?  Who was I?  Suddenly my identity changed and there was nobody who could give me my new name.

The first time this identity loss hit me really hard was when I had to sign his death certificate.  It was real.  My son had died and I had to attach my name to a paper verifying that my son was no longer here.  I didn’t know how to sign my name……..     || Read more

posted by on Child Loss

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Twenty-four years ago I experienced a pit of grief like I never want to experience ever again.  My son died.

The moment Samuel’s soul left this earth, he took part of me with him — a part of my heart and a part of my soul and I knew that those parts of “us” would never return again.

I was lost.  And scared.  And felt so alone.  For the first time in my life I didn’t know if I could go on living.        || Read more

posted by on Child Loss, Explaining Child Loss, Honoring Your Child's Birthday

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Why is it that so many people think they know “exactly how you feel” when child loss occurs?  If I had a nickel for every time somebody told me they knew exactly how I felt after I lost my child, I’d have a stack of nickels a mile high.

Truthfully, nobody knows exactly how a grieving parent, grandparent, or sibling feels after the death of a child.  I understand that people mean well, but it’s time they understand that those words shouldn’t be spoken – ever — following the loss of a child!

So, what do you say to a parent who is grieving the loss of their child?  Do you mention the child’s name?  Do you quote Bible scriptures and tell them everything happens for a reason and to accept this and go on?  What do you say when a child loss occurs?     || Read more

posted by on Explaining Child Loss

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Have you ever wondered about the answer to this question:  “What is the one thing that, if given the chance to change, you would change in your life?”

I think about this all of the time as I play different scenarios in my head.  If this would happen, then that would be the result.  “If I had not been born into a poor family, then this is how my life would be now.”  “If I hadn’t been born terribly shy, then I could have gone on to be a super motivating public speaker.”  “If I didn’t have such a large nose (that always bothered me — I have a larger than life Italian nose!) then I wouldn’t have been so shy, and I would have mingled more with people, and would have gone further in my career.”  “If I hadn’t had an alcoholic mother, she might still be alive and maybe our relationship would have been better.”

And, on and on it goes……..

However, after thinking about all of the “what ifs”, the same answer always comes up at the top of the list.  If I could change one thing in my life………       || Read more