Re-orienting myself


When the pandemic hit, my speaking engagements got canceled. Once everyone pivoted, I started getting virtual engagements and the occasional physically-distanced live ones.

But I’ve noticed something different about myself.

I get misty more often–more emotional. Early on, a friend asked, “Have you thought about how you might handle it if you have an emotional moment? Back then I would practice so many times, by the time I hit the stage I had cried it all out. The story was still emotional but I didn’t cry. Early on my emotions were so raw, there was a greater likelihood floodgates would open. I really didn’t want that to happen.

These days it’s a moment, a pause, where I have to catch my breath and the epic-ness of the story overwhelms me for a moment and I actually see Charles’s, those beautiful curls blowing in the wind. My voice catches and becomes strained and I have to stop, give the moment some respect. My audience gives me that grace. They are with me and they are rooting for me. I feel it.

This is a story I’ve written about and told hundreds of times now. But it still tugs at my heart. And why is it more often now? I’m not really sure. All I know is that grief is the tie I have to my child. There’s no need to beat myself up about it. It’s just something I’ve noticed and will accommodate.

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AnneMoss Rogers

AnneMoss Rogers is a mental health and suicide education expert, mental health speaker, suicide prevention trainer and consultant. She is author of the Book, Diary of a Broken Mind and co-author of Emotionally Naked: A Teacher's Guide to Preventing Suicide and Recognizing Students at Risk with Kim O'Brien PhD, LICSW. She raised two boys, Richard and Charles, and lost her younger son, Charles to addiction and suicide on June 5, 2015. She is a motivational speaker who empowers by educating and provides life saving strategies and emotionally healthy coping skills. As talented and funny as Charles was, letting other people know they matter was his greatest gift. And now that's the legacy she carries forward in her son's memory. Mental Health Speakers Website.

2 thoughts on “Re-orienting myself”

  1. I noticed last week, on Whitten’s birthday, I did just fine. For the first time. I went to “see him” and work on the plot, as usual, but it was more like any other day, than any year before. I had a melancholy week, but I didn’t fall to pieces. I think it’s because I’ve been drowning myself in him since this Covid mess started. I’ve been at home surrounded by pictures, his room, etc etc…(Also because the whole year has been hard – lots of grand babies and weddings.) My therapist says I am integrating the grief into my life and that is a good thing. But I completely understand the epic story you have to tell…..💙

    1. Gray that’s a big step. And although I’m having more weepy moments when I tell the story, I am not struggling more. It’s like it’s taking a different kind of evolution. I’m just going with it. I guess it keeps it real and talking always helps me. You’ve worked really hard to integrate it into your life and perhaps the immersion helped you get there.

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