Setting expectations for the holidays after the death of a child

The first Christmas after Charles died by suicide, I expected it to be hard. All those firsts are hard–first birthday, mother’s day, father’s day etc. Hell, Arbor Day was hard.

For the second Christmas after Charles’ suicide, I was sure the holidays would be better. After all, the first one happened and I survived. How bad could this second one be?

December 1, 2017 slapped me hard and shut me down. My head was a mixing bowl with too many ingredients and it was hard to complete anything with more than two steps. It was unexpected and I was unprepared … Read more...

My second Christmas without my child

by Tamara Rollison

Tamara and Logan

I will never forget the date, 5:30 a.m., July 22, 2016. My 19-year-old son Logan was pronounced dead in a Virginia hospital. Every bone in his body broken, bleeding from the inside out. His eyes black, his head swollen, his blonde hair blood stained from fatal injuries that literally crushed him when he took the street curve too fast and slammed his truck head on into a tree less than a half mile from our home.

I would never again hear him say, “I love you mom,” or feel that rush of excitement waiting … Read more...

Dear holidays, I hate you

Holidays are supposed to be festive and fun. But I’m not getting that vibe at all. You just bring me heaviness and grief. While people hustle and bustle about, I feel like I’m moving in slow motion. I just feel flat and lifeless. And sad.

Couldn’t you skip a year? This is my second holiday season and I still can’t seem to find my footing. I have a hard time finding motivation to do anything about Christmas at all. I just want it to go away.

I had hoped to be at the point of tolerating the Christmas holidays by … Read more...

Surviving the first holidays after my son’s suicide

So the grief is like a tidal wave. When it hits, it hits hard. It can last a day or about a day and a half. Or sometimes shorter. But over the holidays the periods have stretched back out. They had gotten shorter and I know they will again. It maybe my journey but I’m not always the captain of it.

After a big hit of grief, you can have a “grief hangover” where you just feel sort of lethargic and shell shocked but relieved that the worst of it is over. Then you have to kick your own butt … Read more...