Tag Archives: #loss


When You Lose A Child…

you lose a part of your heart 

Me and my kids in the late 70's

Me and my kids in the late 70’s

Shortly after this picture, I got a divorce and for the most part raised the kids on my own. They were my everything. My life. I loved my kids and wanted to see them grow up and become adults and have kids of their own some day. If you have never had kids you can’t understand how something so small grows inside you and becomes this human being so full of life and love. And so begins the heartache it can also bring.

I have had many people in my life who I’ve loved and many I have lost. My Dad passed away when I was in my 40’s. My Mom died 2 years ago and my sister Rhonda 6 months after her. All of these losses were devastating at the time and I am still dealing with the pain from them. After my sister passed I was lost. I had no immediate core family. I was an orphan. But I did have family. I had my 3 kids and my  5 grandkids. And I had my sister’s two girls who I think of as my own. It was a little surreal going from having a parent or parents to being the head of your family. But it was enough.

A little over 2 weeks ago that changed. My son died. He was 46 and had 2 beautiful children. He was a wonderful, loving man and even more a wonderful father. He loved his kids more than life itself. They were his everything. He never had a good role model in his own father, who chose not to play a part in his life, so he vowed to be the father he never had. And he was. He was a very loving person who would do anything for anyone, sometimes to his own demise.

This loss is still not registering in my heart. My brain knows it is true but my heart is having a hard time coming to terms with it. I expect him to burst in the room at any minute with his latest stories. But he doesn’t. I just can’t process that he is gone and I will miss him every second of every day until I take my last breath.

Dave was forever telling me he loved me and showed me in so many ways. He was never afraid of showing his feelings. I remember back when he was a kid and was going off to Y Camp, he hugged me and kissed me in front of all his friends. I thanked him and said I was proud of him for doing that and he couldn’t understand why. He was always doing things like that.

He had a wonderful sense of humor and loved kids and animals. He always had a love of little kids and they were somehow drawn to him. But he loved it and never tired of playing with them. He was in many ways a big kid himself. He loved becoming an uncle and loved his nephews so much. He was always tumbling around on the floor with them or chasing them around the yard. But the day he became a father was the best time of his life. His daughter and son meant the world to him. He was so very proud of them and how they loved and treated each other. But also evident was their love of him. Their eyes sparkled and their entire little personalities changed when he would walk in the room. They idolized him.

Dave and his 2 kids

Dave and his 2 kids

Our family’s lives changed forever that day 2 weeks ago. It altered the very core of us. Who are we now without Dave? How do we go on as a family without him? I love my family and I am so blessed to have my 2 awesome daughters and my 5 equally awesome grandkids. I know I am lucky to have them all. But there will forever be a hole in my heart. And I don’t think I can fix that. I do plan to honor him by keeping his memory alive in his kids and will spend the rest of my life doing that. It is the one thing I “can” do. His kids are young and I don’t want them to forget what a wonderful father he was or how much he loved them. I promise to keep your memory alive Dave, it is the last thing I can do for you, my son.

I know I will go through many emotions in the next weeks and months ahead. Right now it is one of disbelief. I hope I can just get to a place where I remember the good times we shared and feel at peace.

I leave you with a question and a quote.

Have you ever lost a child? How did you manage to go on?

“You son will hold your hand only for a little while. But he will hold your heart for a lifetime.” ~ Unknown



10 Things To Do For Someone When They Lose A Loved One

And I am speaking from recent experience here…

angel watching over us

angel watching over us

In the first couple of days after you lose someone you love, you can’t think or make even the smallest decisions. It helps to have people around you that can do these simple tasks for you. Friends and family call and ask what they can do to help but we don’t know what to say, we don’t know what will help. Our minds are numb, filled with so many things and thoughts that sometimes we can’t even do the simplest task. We don’t know where the checkbook is or where we put the pen to write the check or thank you cards. I have lost many people and I know many people who have lost someone close. I will never again think a card is enough.

Here are some things that someone did for us and it made all the difference.

  1. Just do something. Anything. Don’t ask what needs to be done. Look around, think about what your friend or family member may need done and do it.
  2. Prepare food or buy a meal or just bring a bunch of food by. People have freezers. Don’t worry they may have too many people dropping food by. Don’t just do it for the first couple days, keep doing it. Call them up and invite them to go out for lunch, coffee, brunch. They may not go but they will be grateful you asked. Ask again in a few weeks.
  3. Make calls for them. Think about people they may have wanted to let know and they may not have, you can do it for them so they don’t have to. It is hard for them to make these calls, you can help so much by doing it.
  4. Do small things for them so they don’t have to worry about it. Mow the grass, weed the garden, take the dog for a walk, do their wash, shop for groceries. All of these things are such small things but will mean a lot to the person, believe me.
  5. Be there in the weeks and months following the service. Everyone calls at first and stops by and then..nothing. Grief doesn’t just stop overnight. You shouldn’t stop either.
  6. If you have some area of expertise offer your assistance. If you are an electrician and they need wiring done, do it for them. If you are a lawyer and they need some advice, give it to them…for free. Whatever your specialty is, I’m sure you can help in some way to make their life less stressful at this time.
  7. When you talk to the person, tell them a story about their loved one that is special to you. Something they did or said that you remember that has really stuck in your mind or how their loved one has affected your life. I have heard so many wonderful stories the past week that have truly made this time much easier. If you send a card, write something in the card, make it personal.
  8. Don’t ask us to make a decision. About anything, even something as simple as what to make for dinner. We can’t.
  9. Listen. Just listen. Sometimes that is better than any advice or words of condolence. We just need to talk.
  10. Call, stop by, email, text..often. Just let them know you are there for them.

I would add one thing that really helped me and that is to make us laugh. Something so simple yet so healing. I didn’t think I could laugh at this terrible time in my life, but my friends and family made me laugh. And give lots of hugs..hugs really are the best medicine for a broken heart. People have hugged me so hard I thought they would break my ribs. But it didn’t hurt, it helped.

At some point I will write about this loss. I can’t do it yet, it is too fresh, and the wound is still open.

“Grief is like the ocean, ebbing and flowing. Sometimes the water is calm, sometimes it is overwhelming. All we can do is learn to swim.” ~ Vicki Harrison