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 and we filled in with the ones they chose over the years. We had a Christmas tradition that every year, we’d go to CaryTown in Richmond and they’d get to pick an ornament which always turned out to be more than one and close to a … Read more...
Chewed up and spit out heart. If you’ve lost a child, you know the feeling.
But this is gum. Which is candy. which means that Charles loved it. Walmart? His favorite store. Why? Because on some day during the week, don’t remember which one, they’d run a special on candy at Walmart. Or maybe it was just the cheapest there. Second was WaWa because he could buy candy and get a sub.
When I was in Zurich this summer, I looked out my hotel window and spotted this and I immediately thought– “dangling heart.”
It feels that way sometimes. Like my heart is dangling precipitously over a giant hole and in danger of dropping into a crevice and getting buried, never to be revived again. Flat. Lifeless.
But it’s Zurich. And it would most likely fall into a body of water. The heart would swim to the side. Fight for survival. Rise from the body of water to dive in again if it were a hot day. It might even have fun. … Read more...
There is a project in Richmond, VA intended to spread joy in the darkness of struggle or loss called the #URockProject. Anyone who finds one of these rocks and is touched by the message can take it home to keep.
To everyone out there fighting the stigma of mental illness or adjusting to life after a loss to suicide, this project is meant to let you know you are a warrior.
I am adjusting, or trying to adjust, to life after my son’s suicide and Rebecca Farrow from the #URockProject painted this rock in memory of Charles. I only … Read more...
A new friend in the neighborhood had me and two other ladies for dinner tonight. She had sent me this heart previously, having seen it in Chickahominy which is in Hanover, Virginia. Three of the four of us at dinner lost a child to suicide. It’s always nice to be able to talk openly on the subject although we talked about a lot of other things, too.
Lots of laughter. Some tears. A lot of camaraderie. I had such a good time. Because even if you lose a child to suicide, you can laugh again. You can even laugh on … Read more...
Charles loved cheese. Cheese sticks, cheese squares, cheese sandwiches, cheese quesadillas, Cheese-its, and Cheese Whiz–which he’d squirt directly into his mouth. I never bought Cheese Whiz by the way. But once he was 16, I could not prevent Cheese-Whiz purchases. His favorite cheese? Pepper jack which I bought in little squares.
Although I miss my youngest son, I don’t miss the smoke detector going off at 2am because he was cooking a cheese sandwich and fell asleep while it got black in the toaster oven.
So my friend Connie goes out to her mailbox and low and behold this is on her driveway. From where? She doesn’t know. When she went back out, it was gone. Her son is out there somewhere. Unfortunately, her family has suffered intensely from her son’s addiction for over 12 years.
Those cracks represent the broken hearts and lives that are lost as a result of this opiate epidemic. Some from overdose. Some from suicide like my son. And still others from drug related deaths such as accidents and illnesses from long-term use.