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 read more

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 read more

Easter egg heart— #griefheart number 281

Easter egg heart

On Easter morning, I could not help but remember how much Charles LOVED easter egg hunts. I think he is about seven when we go to the event in my parent’s neighborhood. It was a game, a group activity, and it had candy involved so it had all the ingredients Charles’ loved. What is funny read more

Black heart— #griefheart number 280

Black heart

I see references in Charles’ music to his black heart. He felt like he was ashamed because of the darkness in his soul.

I hear that a lot from those with mental illness. They think they are not worthy of friends, of a family’s love, or life. That darkness is part of the disease of depression, read more

Carry more love in my heart— #griefheart number 278

Carry more love in my heart

Since losing my son to suicide, I realize I feel every emotion more fully.

At first, I thought it was only pain I felt more acutely. Eventually, I noticed I felt everything, including joy, times one hundred. As strange as it sounds, this loss has given me the capacity to carry more love in my heart.

What is the #griefheart project?

I read more

Second Blog Birthday Heart— #griefheart number 275

Happy birthday my blog. Happy birthday my blog.

Even though Emotionally Naked is two years old, in Google years I’m middle aged. The good part about that is that at two years, if you’ve blogged consistently, Google gives you precedence in the search engine world. All week I’ve read more

Cousin love— #griefheart number 274

Cousin love

My niece, Aurora, sent me some soaps she made for Christmas. One of them was a heart. Charles and Aurora didn’t see each other that often, but I know she adored her older cousin and he loved her.

When Charles died, Aurora and her mom drove down from upstate New York to the memorial service and read more

For the love of chocolate— #griefheart number 271

For the love of chocolate

One of Charles’ favorite places in Richmond was “For the Love of Chocolate” in Carytown. Every trip we took to this charming part of Richmond with Charles started or ended with a trip to this shop.

The first time he went in, he stopped, looked around and said , “I’m in read more

Headstone heart— #griefheart number 270

Headstone heart

When I started the #griefheart project, it had been my hope that more people would honor their loved ones with this project. To give permission to loved ones to honor the memory of those who died by stigmatized illness such as suicide or overdose. (See examples below)

But few have taken me up on it. read more