Skip to main content


Showing posts from 2017

Hidden Triggers

There isn't a day that goes by that I don't think about Charlotte. She is everywhere. I see her in so many things. Most of the time, the thoughts are happy memories but they are often tinged with a bittersweet sadness and longing.  Around mid-June each year, it starts. For some reason, I'm extra sensitive to different memories or triggers. Some of these make sense. At the end of the school year, as kids are celebrating accomplishments and moving forward in time, I think of Charlotte. She never even made it to Kindergarten. I try to imagine what she would be interested in now, what her summers would look like, who her friends would be. Even with another child who has much to celebrate and keep me occupied, my thoughts fall back to her.  Bear. Just sayin' hello.  Other triggers are more mundane. I was at our chiropractor's office the other day for a regular visit and there was Bear, sitting there staring at me from the kid's play area. I hadn't tho

Rub Some Dirt On It!

If there's one thing I've learned on this parenting journey, it's that everyone travels through this experience looking through a lens that is tinted by their own experiences, the way they were raised by their own family, their education, and their personalities.  From the very beginning of parenthood...even before the child pops out of the womb...we, as parents, are bombarded with suggestions and recommendations. Get a doula. Get an epidural. Don't get an epidural. Don't ever co-sleep. Follow your child's lead. Don't feed them solids until they are six months old. Feed them solids early and they will sleep through the night sooner. Enroll them in classes to stimulate their brain. Let them be "free spirits" and explore and play.  In the words of the great Jimmy Buffett, "If we couldn't laugh, we would all go insane." It's with all this in mind that I reflect on one parenting perspective that is unique to those who have ch

That Would Be Enough

It's been seven years since Charlotte died. Sometimes it feels like a lifetime ago. Sometimes it feels like just yesterday. The time between early November and the end of January harbors some of the most intense memories from that time in late 2009 and early 2010 when we ran out of medical options and watched her die. On top of that, January 20 marks the date when she was first diagnosed (a year before). It's no wonder that this time of year is hard for our family, emotionally.  Roger calls it "the bus" .  That feeling of grief settles on his chest like a great weight and it stays there. Sometimes it's there for a few days but often it takes up residence for weeks at a time. There's no moving the bus. You just have to let it park for a while.  This guy. Some days he drives me crazy. Without him, I certainly would be. One of the challenges in handling a collective grief is that nobody mourns the same way. The timetable is different. The intensity can be