loss

‘This is addiction. This is ‘just one more time.’ ‘Just a little hit.’ It’s a 3 a.m. phone call we knew was coming, but prayed never would.’: Family mourns loved one lost to addiction, ‘drugs don’t love you, your friends and family do’

“Addiction is a room (and whole hospital waiting room) full of brothers, sisters, nieces, uncles and friends beating themselves up because they didn’t save you. It’s a doctor saying the words ‘legally brain dead.’ An empty chair at every family event. It’s a daughter, a son who have to figure this world out without their dad. This is a man who loved with everything he had. Drugs don’t love you. Your family and friends do.”

‘I want my mom!!! I want my mom to come back!!!’ He was totally inconsolable. I’ve never felt more in tune with a person’s emotion.’: Daughter’s advice on getting through the holidays without your mother

“I was dropping my son off at daycare. When we arrived, there was another little boy who’d just been dropped off by his mom. He couldn’t have been more than 3 years old. And he was wailing. This child was genuinely distressed. He wanted his mom very, very badly. I don’t know if I’ve ever felt more in tune with another person’s emotion.”

‘I think I have heartburn.’ He winced, shook it off. ‘As long as it’s not my pancreas!’ We laughed, having no idea.’: Woman loses partner to pancreatic cancer, ‘I walked with him, through life and death’

“As the days passed, he couldn’t eat or sleep. Then came the shocking weight loss. This body I once knew was now all bones and sharp edges. I could see his ribs through his t-shirt. ‘We see a large mass,’ the doctor informed us. I cried silent tears. I could no longer touch any part of him, except his hands. Everything hurt too much. We were no longer laughing. We were hoping for one more day.”

‘You’re my mom,’ he said. WHAT? I gave birth to a GIRL. Second of all, my daughter died at birth. ‘Could it be?!’: Mom reunites with son 29 years after being told he ‘died at birth’

“As soon as I gave birth, my mother told the doctor, ‘Get the baby out of here! We’re not keeping it.’ That crushed my soul. I was 16 and never allowed to see my daughter. I overheard the nurse say ‘severe infection.’ I cried even more. ‘She didn’t make it.’ 29 years later, after the birth and death of my daughter, I received an email on Ancestry.com. Deep in my heart, I knew. My mind was racing.”

‘With perfect clarity, our 20-month-old looked up at us. ‘I love you.’ It was a miracle days before he passed.’: Father recalls tender moment son diagnosed with childhood cancer shocked parents, ‘Those words are forever etched in my memory’

“A miracle came just days before he passed away. At just 20 months old, our son had only verbalized one word. Dog. Yet, he responded to my wife and I as we laid over his crib, tears falling from our cheeks, expressing our love for him. With absolute perfect clarity, our little boy looked up at us. I held him for the last time. I crave his smile. I miss seeing his eyes light up.”

‘I’d be single and a virgin forever. ‘The boys called me ‘big girl.’ I’d never be able to be naked in front of a lover.’: Woman loses 115 pounds after drug addiction, traumatic childhood, ‘I regret nothing, I finally had an opportunity to blossom’

“‘Are you using drugs again?,’ one of my professors asked me. I am a recovering drug addict, who lost 115 pounds and changed my entire life. I had a girl assume I was sick, a close friend expressed to me that I ‘took the easy way out.’ The smaller I got, the more attention I got, the more confused I was. I had sex for the first time after my dad died with a guy who blocked my number the day after he took my virginity. I wanted to stop hating myself, I wanted to be genuinely happy.”

‘I couldn’t see him that way. ‘This is not real, this cannot be real.’ I didn’t go in, my beautiful boy was gone.’: Mom makes ‘brave’ decisions in her grief after losing son to suicide, ‘I choose not to torture myself’

“I chose not to wear black. It was the last occasion I would get to dress up for him. I wouldn’t attend his wedding, so I chose an outfit that would honor him and be celebratory. He was gone. All that was left of him was the shattered remains of a beautiful, perfect body he no longer wanted to be in. He chose his angelversary. He chose to leave us all behind and graduate to Heaven.”

‘Mom! We’ve been in an accident! They can’t get Daddy to wake up.’ I asked if the airbags deployed.’: Woman loses husband in tragic accident, marries fellow widow, ‘My heart began to beat again’

“Eleven days later, I got a message from Todd. I had never met him in person. We began very innocent conversation about being ‘only parents’ to our children. We sat in that booth for 3 hours…. talking, laughing, crying. After we finally left, I sent a text. ‘I know I should be playing it cool, but I had a really great time. I’d like to do it again soon.’”

‘This Thanksgiving, I refuse to share what I’m ‘thankful’ for. Grief and gratitude can sit at the same table.’: Mom of child loss abstains from holiday traditions, ‘I’m still grateful, but bereaved’

“I get it. The holidays bring in the time of year when I’m supposed to focus on what I have and not what I want. Well, no thank you. I’m grieving that empty space at the table. No matter how many times I write down all I’m ‘thankful’ for, someone is missing. Excuse me if I seem hesitant to participate in your sharing around the table. Please trust that I’m still a grateful person.”

‘Your meal’s already been covered.’ I don’t have the right words. I teared up.’: Stranger’s act of kindness for mom-of-3 at Cracker Barrel came when she needed it most, ‘my brother was killed on his way home for Thanksgiving’

“At the end of our meal, our server brought us a to-go box and said 5 words with a smile that hit me hard: ‘Your meal’s already been covered.’ Here’s what no one could have possibly seen: Today, 4 years ago, my little brother lived his last day in this world. Today was a ‘Just make it through’ kind of day. Until this moment.”

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