My Friend, Gen

“You do not have to be good. You do not have to walk on your knees for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting. You only have to let the soft animal of your body love what it loves.” Wild Geese by Mary Oliver* Today I have lost a dear friend. I am sad. And, […]

Day of the Young

‘The mention of my child’s name may bring tears to my eyes, but it never fails to bring music to my ears.” Bereaved Parent It’s harder this year. Placing my nephew’s photo on the altar is an inescapable reminder that he is gone. And it brings all of the young faces into clear focus. Dia […]

A New Normal?

“Normal day, let me be aware of the treasure you are. Let me learn from you, love you, bless you before you depart. Let me not pass you by in quest of some rare and perfect tomorrow. Let me hold you while I may, for it may not always be so. One day I shall […]

We are with you here…

“This place where you are right now, God circled on a map for you.” Hafiz Dear Nephew, We are bringing you home today to be with your family in familiar surroundings. I grieve for our loss of you but I do not grieve for you.  I rejoice for all that you are and all you […]

Losing a Friend

“Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye lands. Serve the Lord with gladness… Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise…“ Psalms 100 I am not a memory keeper. I look to others in my life to save the details of my history – to rehash and relish silly […]

Saturday: Three Funerals and a Birthday Party

Why is death always a surprise. It is, after all, a foregone conclusion. There has been a turnaround. Our social calendar is filled with more celebrations of life than celebrations in life. In spite of this cumulative knowledge and no matter how many years we have lived, we are stunned when life ends for someone […]

Thanksgiving Thoughts

Maybe gratitude has nothing to do with joy. Maybe being grateful means recognizing what you have for what it is. Appreciating small victories. Admiring the struggle it takes simply to be human. Meredith Grey Thanksgiving brings out my feelings of gratitude. Through the years my Thanksgiving posts express the joy I feel in my life. […]

Our Fathers (who art in heaven)

Dear Friend, Our lives have been entwined through many years, so I should have known that the death of your father would have a profound effect on me. Not because I knew him. Still, what affects you affects me. And it is the universal feeling of loss, of becoming an orphan at an advanced age […]

El Dia de los Muertos

I’m sitting by the altar this morning in my typical glow of nostalgia. The warmth of the fireplace can’t match what I feel from my memories. My thoughts somehow fill me with joy that transcends the pain of loss. Loved ones live again in a way that coincides with the ancient Aztec belief that their […]

…on Living with Suicide

My Dear Friends, As parents we want to believe that there is always something  we can do to help our children. If we could do… or if we could have done… This propensity for making ourselves responsible is a heavy burden on our best days. On this worst day I wish I could lift this […]