I refuse to bury my son’s memory

There are days that I realize, I’m “that” mother–the one whose child killed himself. I can’t slip out of my skin and be somewhere else or someone else, I have to face this head on.

The truth is, while I can’t avoid it, others can.

It’s how others react that is often interesting and I’ve decided to be sort of an observer of human nature and not be offended. This “scientific” approach towards witnessing reactions to death has helped tremendously.

People ask, “How many children do you have?” to which I give my standard answer. “One of my children is … Read more...

Make the memorial service for death of a child meaningful

This is not the service anyone wants to plan. But when you have to, it’s nice to have some ideas that you know meant something to a mom who has suffered the loss of a child. I’ve been asked this enough, it’s time I wrote a post about it.

You want to know how you can help? So here’s how

I was so overwhelmed by my son’s suicide, that I had to ask for help from my friends when it came to planning funeral details. I didn’t hesitate to accept help for this nor did I shy away from asking for … Read more...

Sometimes I suck

This is not a post about self-esteem. I don’t suffer from that. What I do suffer from is having lost my son to suicide. Because I get overwhelmed or I am experiencing a grief episode, I sometimes fail at being the person I want to be.

Sometimes I suck at being a good wife, daughter or mother. I don’t call as often or plan as many outings as I should. (Stuck in the grief fog.)

Sometimes I suck at being a good friend and I temporarily drop off the face of the earth. (Where did she go?)

Sometimes I suck … Read more...

Alone

alone

Why do we think we have to go it alone? Gut out our losses with no support? Suffer troubles without reaching out or sharing?

For some reason, we’ve become a culture that thinks asking or looking for support is weak. Why is that weak?

Connection is a key human need.

Denying that need is false bravado.

While I consider myself a strong person, having survived a brain tumor and two surgeries from it, an attempted rape and murder attack at knifepoint, a broken neck and a loss of a child by suicide, I have learned it’s ridiculous to go it … Read more...

How many ways to say ‘dead?’

“Hard to comprehend in the human mind
Impossible to envision leaving yourself behind.”
–Charles Aubrey Rogers

kick the bucket

Nobody wants to actually say the word dead.

We say “passed on,” “passed away,” “kicked the bucket,” “passed,” “gone to heaven,” “deceased,” “expired,” “gone,” “departed, “fell asleep in Jesus” and a whole host of other phrases. Despite the fact that it happens to 100% of us, we are not the least bit comfortable with that subject and push it away.

Read the obituaries and see how many phrases are used to put lipstick on death. So entertaining to read some of them. Rarely does … Read more...

I felt you with me, Charles Rogers

Charles S, Haley, Anne Moss

Charles Rogers, I am trying to spread the message any way I can because I know how you suffered. And I need to in order to move forward to cope with losing you.

So I am at Godwin High School with the student-lead group, “No Eagle Left Behind.” This group is focused on awareness surrounding mental illness, bullying, suicide and addiction. Things have changed so much since your suicide. People are starting to talk. I’ve been at it so long, fought so hard and it’s so bittersweet that it’s after your death.

Anyway, I talked … Read more...

Live your dash award

Anne Moss Rogers, Miss Monroe Hill, Mr. Bob Argabright, Dr. Danny Avula

Full Circle Grief Center in Richmond, VA has an event called ‘Live your Dash’ based on a poem by that name. They have awards each year for those who live their dash.

I was honored to be one of 4 recipients of this award for 2017. In fact, I could hardly fight back the tears when they read the poem at the luncheon or when I went up for the award. While I’m so thankful to have found a purpose, I couldn’t help but have reflected on the price … Read more...

Figuring out who you are after a loved one dies

bouncing back
Bouncing back

When Charles first died by suicide, I didn’t know who I was anymore.

I was the mom that had bonfires and countless spend-the-nights and pizza parties. I was the “youtube” house. I was the mom of the funniest most popular kid in school. I was mom of an up-and-coming rap artist. I was the mom who kept condoms available in the boys’ bathroom for anyone in the neighborhood that wanted them–no questions asked. I was the mom of that zany, fun kid Charles.

I was also the mom who tried for years to speak up for her child, get him the … Read more...

Where are you really?

angel

I know everyone says I’ll see Charles again. And I do believe that.

Most of the time.

But there are times I don’t. Times when my mouth goes dry, my heart aches and I think, “What if nothing happens when people die?” Done with the dust and unable to feel the love.

Maybe we make up the “after life” because we fear the end. Fear death. Maybe we say we will see our loved ones again because we need to believe it, because it brings us comfort.

Am I the only one who ever thinks about this? Am I a … Read more...

Grief writes me a love letter

grief writes me a love letter

Dear Anne Moss,

I didn’t mean to hurt you. I numbed you at first because I had to protect you. One can take only so much pain and agony at once.

I watched you in your agonizing moments knowing that these would be building blocks to emotional healing. You suffered under my weight and tried unsuccessfully to lift it yourself when you got tired of it. But I do have a mind of my own and just when you thought you couldn’t take another minute, the weight would lift.

At first, you thought getting better meant getting past me. But then you learned that … Read more...