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Showing posts from February, 2016

A Part of Me

Do you have moments in your life that are still as clear in your memory as though they just happened an hour ago?

February 12, 1998 is one of those days for me. I was a university student, eating macaroni and cheese out of a yogurt or margarine container because I didn't have any clean dishes. Only one of my room mates was home at the time. The phone rang and it was for me. It was my doctor. A biopsy that had been done two weeks earlier had come back positive for cancer. CANCER!! I was 21 years old. I had my whole life in front of me. Cancer was a death sentence in my mind. I remember briefly talking to my parents on the phone, who were going to come and pick me up immediately so I could be at home with them. While we waited, Monique and I scoured her nursing textbooks to find out what this dermatofibrosarcomawas. Remember, this is in the days before most people had internet at home and if they did it was dial-up and there wasn't all too much information to find on the web ye…

Lent and Grief?

Some years I have chosen to participate in Lent, the forty days leading up to Easter. Other years I have chosen not to. This year was going to be one of those 'not to' years. It seemed like it would just land up being another thing to add to the list of things that's just 'too much' right now. Then it came to me--God's gentle whisper, perhaps--grief and lent go hand in hand.

In the journey of grief, there are various stages we have to go through. We really don't have much choice. Right now I think I would classify myself in the stage of depression. Not in the sense of clinical depression, but in the sense that I am easily overwhelmed, I have the blahs, I don't have much energy, and I feel helpless. At first I fought this stage. Depression can get ugly. I know that, but recently I've come to the understanding that depression in grief is different than clinical depression. It is a passage I must go through. I can go about the basic daily routines no p…

Finding Closure Amidst the "If only I had"

Sometimes coming to peace with a decision made or not made is a long process. Sometimes you think you've finally arrived at that peace, only to find out that you re-visit it a few months later.

In the first year of grief, following Mikail's death, the If only I had... played like a broken record in my mind. It's not healthy. I remember our grief counselor assuring us that we did the best we could do at that given moment. There was nothing else we could have or should have done differently. Our doctor, the chief of staff, a pediatrician, the coroner--everyone said the very same thing. It was a lightening strike situation. I think a part of me believed that statement, but a part of me felt like saying You have to say that to make us feel better, I'm Mikail's Mama!! It's my responsibility!! I failed. Yet, over time that truth kept coming to the forefront of my mind and recently it was solidified again when I read the following by Barbara Johnson, combined with the …