On Grieving Out Loud

Tonight my daughter found the nightgown sitting on my pillow and said “this is so cute, was it your sister’s?” And I said yes and she said “are you going to wear it?” And I said yes. And so she (11 years old) handed it to me gently and said “let’s get you changed for bed mommy. You’ve got to sleep”

She brought me a bowl of stroganoff and a coke, and as soon as I finished eating, Henry climbed into my lap and arranged himself this way. Here, I’m asking him to please not lick me because even though I love cats I (like my sister @apopheniabrown) am allergic.

We mustn’t hide our grief and pain from our children. They should see us live, love, grieve, recover. When we show them that life is messy and painful, gorgeous and ecstatic, and that as humans we mostly emerge intact, we then give our children a foundation free of fear. Fear of loss and pain prevent so many of us from doing and feeling so many amazing things.

My children will know that this was so hard, that I hurt so much, that I will miss her with a physical ache, always. And they will watch me rise up. They will know that I stand confident in my decision to push most of my life aside to sit with her. They will, I hope, one day reference this event when making similar decisions in heir own lives.

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