Christmas heart—#griefheart number 291

Wreath heart

Crushed ornaments and greenery from a fallen tree make a perfect #griefheart. The holidays are hard and for the first time since Charles’ suicide in 2015, we have a small Christmas tree. And some lights because I like lights, especially in the dark.

The tree has all the ornaments the kids made ...  read more

Poured my heart into it—#griefheart number 290

Poured my heart into it

It’s subtle but there is a heart in the middle of this crepe. As it was cooking, the image jumped out at me and yelled, “Quick take a photo.”

Charles died three years ago and a lot of healing has happened in this past year. A lot of heart and soul has been poured into my book, this blog. And I’ve gotten just as much back from all of you. That was an unexpected gift.

What is the #griefheart project?

I explain my #griefheart project here. Contact me if you want to honor and remember your loved one who died by suicide or from addiction.

See all #griefhearts so far on pinterest or on this blog by #griefheart category.

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Evolution of my grief after Charles’ suicide

The face of love—#griefheart number 289

The face of love

I think most who suffer from depression like animals, especially dogs. I actually think that therapy dogs would be a great idea for those with suicidal thoughts suffering from depression. After school shootings, therapy dogs help with grief and I know our dog has helped us deal with the loss of Charles by suicide. Charles adored his dog, Andy who thankfully is still with us.

Dogs can sense when you are about to have a seizure, so I’m going to bet they know when someone is about to experience a major depressive episode, too. That’s the unscientific conclusion we’ve come to on this post, Does depression have a smell? 

What is the #griefheart project?

I explain my #griefheart project here. Contact me if you want to honor and remember your loved one who died by suicide or from addiction.

See all #griefhearts so far on pinterest or on this blog by #griefheart category.

Join our tribe by subscribing

 

What did I do with Charles’ ashes?

A sign of love —#griefheart number 288

A sign of love

I don’t think there could be a more perfect #griefheart than this. A message to let someone else know they matter is literally the heart of what Charles was all about. Enough said.

What is the #griefheart project?

I explain my #griefheart project here. Contact me if you want to honor and remember your loved one who died by suicide or from addiction.

See all #griefhearts so far on pinterest or on this blog by #griefheart category.

Join our tribe by subscribing

This is what I live for. It doesn’t get better than this

A river runs through it heart —#griefheart number 287

River runs through it heart

I have not posted a #griefheart in a long time. I have had this one in mind for a while and was stumped in regard to how to illustrate the concept. Someone sent this and it was close enough.

Charles loved the James River and he was the worst swimmer on the planet. Dog paddle was the only stroke he knew and even that was pathetic. I took him to lessons for years. And would not get it because it was too cold. So I took him to an indoor pool that was heated. Richard dove in and got it done.

Not Charles.

He stubbornly stood on the side of the pool for two solid weeks and never got in. When Charles didn’t want to do something, there was no talking him into it.

For that reason, I worried when he would go to the river he would drown because he was such a poor swimmer. And he was not averse to thrill seeking.

Ironic how I worried about drowning when he ultimately killed himself. The one potential cause of death that never, ever crossed my mind as it related to my youngest son.

We live so close to the river now.He would have loved that and been down there all the time with his dog, Andy. If only.

What is the #griefheart project?

I explain my #griefheart project here. Contact me if you want to honor and remember your loved one who died by suicide or from addiction.

See all #griefhearts so far on pinterest or on this blog by #griefheart category.

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Who’d have thought my child’s worst enemy was in his own head?

 

Strawberry heart to honor Adam Doliber —#griefheart number 286

Adam Doliber’s HeartAdam Doliber died by suicide in August of 2016. Alex Chaffee, a friend of his, sent me this to honor his memory. 

From Alex: “Chesterfield Berry Farm is where I met Adam Doliber in 2015, son of Kathy and Bill. Adam died by suicide not even one year after I met him. This was my first time returning back to the berry farm since I last worked there. I had a sense of nostalgia. Even ...  read more

Petrified heart—#griefheart number 285

Petrified is how I felt during the last phone call with Charles that I could not figure out. Petrified is how I felt when I heard the news of his suicide. Not petrified like preserved. But literally scared as shit.

Scared of facing such an insurmountable loss. Fear of what was previously unknown to me. Grief from a loss by suicide is not something that is regularly discussed. Hell, grief in general and death is rarely discussed. Too morbid a topic. Yet it happens to all of us.

I am no longer afraid of the topic. My heart might hurt but that fear part is now gone. The shock I suffered at first comes every once in a while in brief jolts. I don’t think you ever get used to being the parent that lost a child to suicide. Not really. No matter how many times you think it or say it, there is this surreal quality to it. That child you once held in your arms. The one you taught to read and potty trained. The one that hugged you and thought you were the center of the universe took his own life.

I think no matter how many clues we have before a suicide, it’s so hard to fathom our child could do that. So how the hell do we really expect to have caught on before it happened? Something so unbelievable.

What is the #griefheart project?

I explain my #griefheart project here. Contact me if you want to honor and remember your loved one who died by suicide or from addiction.

See all #griefhearts so far on pinterest or on this blog by #griefheart category.

 

Love you this much – #griefheart number 165

Heart of a blue bird—#griefheart number 284

I got this card from a dear neighbor, Roxann, on Charles’ birthday week. We used to live across the street from her family and watched her kids grow up before they moved away around middle school. They were the best neighbors. She and her husband have two lovely daughters.

So in the card, Roxann ...  read more

Birthday cake heart— #griefheart number 283

I celebrated Charles’ birthday at training today and my friend Gray brought a cake in honor of my child who would have been 23. Gray lost her son, Whitten, to suicide. So sweet of her to bring this cake and I had a group with whom to share it.

Meanwhile, my husband went to go retrieve Charles’ ashes. It’s taken us nearly three years to go get them. I’ve remained undecided about what to do with his ashes. I waffle between wanting to take them with me always and ultimately bury them when I die, to wanting that grave site I can visit. For now, I’ll get something nice to put them in.

What’s odd to me is how heavy the ashes were. I didn’t expect them to be 10-12 pounds. On TV, ashes are always in some small bag or a chock ful of nuts can.

Thanks for your well wishes, your support, comments, and hugs. It helps. It really does.

What is the #griefheart project?

I explain my #griefheart project here. Contact me if you want to honor and remember your loved one who died by suicide or from addiction.

See all #griefhearts so far on pinterest or on this blog by #griefheart category.

DailyWeekly

Charles always knew how to make me laugh when I was low

Pajama jeans love— #griefheart number 282

So there is a story behind these. Pun intended since this is a photo of the back end of my most comfortable jeans. So the denim style now is skin tight. That’s NOT the style of this old pair. These are well worn and soft. Because of that, holes appear in the rear. And when they do, I make a patch out of leftover jean material and sew it on to cover the hole.

These are my book writing jeans. Mondays are my dedicated days for writing my book and I’m currently working on draft number two, having completing draft one.

So this past week, I’m sitting in my pajama jeans and editing my book, I felt all this heat in my eyebrows and they itched. I got up to take a look and I had broken out in hives from eyebrows to my forehead. What the h_ll?

It’s that time of year when the slightest little rash or bump blows up on my face. I have always called it the grief rash. My skin, during this time, is ultra sensitive and I think that I am too emotional to have the perspective to edit the book and I have to take a break for a couple of weeks until I get through Charles’ birthday month.

It’s my time to feel close to my son, honor his memory but also understand that like my old jeans, my heart is softer right now and more vulnerable to tearing.

What is the #griefheart project?

I explain my #griefheart project here. Contact me if you want to honor and remember your loved one who died by suicide or from addiction.

See all #griefhearts so far on pinterest or on this blog by #griefheart category.

DailyWeekly

Is my story is too ugly?