Grief, You Bitch.

What’s worse? Watching someone you love and care about suffer and grieve, or to grieve yourself? Exploring grief can be a dangerous task.One of my self-proclaimed characteristics is being an over-empathizer. I often see people suffering and suffer for them. It sends me into a panic or can even trigger an anxiety attack. I want to help and help and help, but sometimes all you can do is listen and listen and listen. Even that can be hard because when do you stop listening and start with the comforting words? How do you help someone grieve?...more

On Loss, Lessons, and the Meaning of 'Wolf Winter'

"My daughter, when it ends, it ends," my father said. "There is nothing more to it than that and there is nothing you can do about it. In time, there will be something new; still wonderful, still worthwhile." ...more
A beautiful essay. Your father sounds like a wise and wonderful man. I'm going to think about ...more

When Your an Independent College Student and Your Parents Crash Your Party

I'm just a normal girl, living what I thought was a normal college experience until one day my parents crashed my "party" and haven't left... yet. When I think of college I think of freedom, I think of friends, parties and studying. Okay, well studying first... yeah, first is studying. What I don't think of is your parents coming to live with you, shattering everything you learned to do on your own for the past three years like setting your own rules, your own bedtime and who you are hanging out with on a regular basis....more

Finding beauty in death

I cannot imagine the pain of a mother delivering a dead baby. All the dreams, all the plans, all the joy. Gone, just like that. As though it had never happened. I have no idea how I would react. Would I want pictures to remember that child? Or would it hurt more to look at them?...more

Music for the Bereaved

I would have been ok talking to the Rotary Club President about joining up had Neil Young’s “Harvest Moon” not come on the restaurant’s sound system.  We were meeting over breakfast to discuss my becoming a Rotarian.  He was discussing the Club's margarita booth at the local Art & Wind Festival (that just sounds wrong),  when on came Neil Young singing one of “our” songs,  George's and mine and our 32 years together.  (My husband died of cancer in 2013 )....more

Why the hardest things to do are sometimes the best thing for you

It's been almost 6 months exactly since my ex called off the wedding, and 3 months since we broke-up.  When you've been with someone for over 5 years, you really don't realize how much that person has become part of your life and part of you until you have to let them go.  You don't realize how many different types of grieving you have to go through to heal.  Last June, I grieved the loss of my next step in life's journey with my love.  In September, I then had to grieve the loss of the romantic relationship....more

"Good Grief" by Granger Westberg

Good Grief, by Granger Westberg, was recommended to me by our pastor when Robert was hospitalized for the final time. I didn’t read it until this past winter....more

Hello, Grief, I thought you'd pissed off already

There are milestones in the year – birthdays, anniversaries, special times – which were celebrated in life and which are then necessarily commemorated after the death of a loved one.It is these milestones which remind me every year that I am not in control of the grieving process.Being one used to being in control of herself, events and others, this size does not fit well on me....more


deardoug, Today was the perfect day, warm, sunny day. Started with a tasty cup of coffee while watching the teenage bluejays gobble up all the seed at the feeders; three times I refilled them. Then a walk in the woods with the horses and dogs. Time spent with a friend looking for her first horse.  Some greasy fries and a hot dog at a little place that hasn't changed in 15 years. A call to my Son to wish him a good trip, his first vacation in 7 years....more
Dear Doug, Now it is Saturday and I hadn't shed a tear until today. Darn it, several days and no ...more

Three Days

After that first, warm, early spring-like day—that last family therapy session on our little patio—when Olivia announced she wanted to finish the 11th grade in the coming eight weeks then move to her father’s a state away and drop out of high school, I walked around in a trance for three days. I washed dishes, drove, taught class, shopped for groceries, and finished cleaning the bathroom sink just in time to greet the therapist when she arrived for her last session alone with Olivia....more