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Second Death Cafe Santa Clarita

Aside Death Cafe Family Grief Health Open Communication Press Support Thoughts

There’s just something about communing over enchiladas served on a bed of death related conversation that makes me feel glad I’m alive!   The second Death Café Santa Clarita fed my soul and my belly.  Wednesday night, ten strangers, were lightly tossed by the question, “What is your most significant death experience?” Ten different answers, seemingly miles apart, but in the course of sharing, we discovered one unifying factor:  our desire to hear and be heard. We walked in as individuals, salads and desserts in hand, not giving any clues as to the depth of our loss experiences.  As we ate...

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What the Heck is Grief Camp

Thoughts

What the Heck is Grief Camp? A couple of weeks ago, I packed my car, sleeping bags and all, drove through the flat desert floor of the Antelope Valley, past Pear Blossom, and climbed the steep, narrow, winding road to Idyllwild for grief camp.  No one ever imagines themselves ever wanting to go to grief camp—no one. But, after attending this gathering of families who have experienced the loss of a child and facilitated there for the past four years, I found myself looking forward to returning. Why? Because, as one attendee put it, “This is the only place where...

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A Word the Mother's Day Gift to Myself

Family Health home mental health motherhood quotes Thoughts

As the snap dragons in my garden raised their fierce little heads to welcome spring a few weeks ago, my thoughts gave rise to this year’s Mother’s Day celebrations. My heart ached for the mothers who have lost children this year specifically:  my friend Janet, the Sandy Hook mom’s and the Boston bombing moms.  They will be enduring this holiday for the first time without their babies.  Those of us living with the loss of a child experience this day with a mixed bag of chaotic emotions. Very often, this day set aside for breakfast in bed and bouquets of...

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Discovering Dolly

animals Family mental health Parenting Thoughts

Lately, I’ve been feeling quite depressed, largely because I have had too much free time on my hands.  This phenomenon is new to me.  I cannot remember a single period of time in my life where I had three months of waking, sending kids out the door, staying home—alone, for 8 hours or more each day and having nothing mandatory to do; no job to show up to; no deadline for edits to be done by; no oncology appointment to worry about.  Most of my life has been spent with a little one, or medium one and even a large...

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Breathe

Family Health Parenting Thoughts

Sometimes life is one big inhale.  Sucking in air.  Holding it.  Waiting to exhale.  To ventilate.  That is the hard part. I have three very full days ahead including spending the night with Dave’s ex-stepmother, Susan’s, in San Clemente, in preparation for speaking in Laguna Hills on Thursday and then catching a plane to Portland where Dave and I will have dinner with Jess and Jojo (YEAH!) and then participate on the parent panel of an End Of Life Nurse Education Consortium meeting.  Home on Friday night and then Saturday, attend the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s Light the Night Walk...

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