My father was lost in a world of darkness. The chains of mental illness wrapped their wicked fingers around his throat and squeezed until he pulled the trigger on his life. That was January 1977; he was 36. I couldn’t wrap my young brain around that loss for decades. I just felt the colossal void his suicide left in the form of emptiness, pain, … Read More Why You Need to Grieve Every Loss
On a crisp November evening just before bedtime, my phone alerted me to a new text. “I just got a phone call, my daughter died in a car accident today.” I stood frozen by shock searching for something of value to say to this grieving father. A wave of sadness swept through my body as I eked out a feeble, “I am so sorry.” … Read More Sitting With the Broken: Part I
Spring and early summer is typically when local communities gear up for Relay for Life; an organization whose tagline “celebrate, remember, and fight back” inspires its participants to raise money for cancer research for the American Cancer Society (relayforlife.org, 2014). It’s also the time of year that triggers a flood of memories from my own experience with cancer. I frequently refer to my encounter as “the … Read More Two Responses to Valley Experiences
Have you spent any time contemplating what your family, friends and the world will remember about you after you leave this life? I had that opportunity in the fall of 2005. I had been dealing with some annoying symptoms for several months when I finally wised up and got them checked out. After performing a standard biopsy, a two week follow-up appointment was scheduled to discuss … Read More Why Not Me?