How in the world do I take care of my kids when my heart just shattered in a million little pieces?
I asked this question years ago when I lost my 16-year-old son during the Type A Flu epidemic. He was misdiagnosed by the doctor and died within 24 hours from untreated bacterial meningitis.
I can’t go on with the story without telling you my own grief recovery is one of the things I’m most proud of.
Not only did it change me, but it was also the greatest love story I could give to my living children.
It wasn’t easy, and the truth is, grief is not something you ever get over. It’s a way of life you learn to accept.
Now, I can’t imagine who I was before the loss.
Life is different. I’m different.
And Covid-19 has erupted those feelings of another major life change all over again.
How you handle this pandemic will lay the foundation for the adults your children will become.
As I studied for my grief recovery certification...
When I tell my story, people almost don’t believe it could happen. But it did. And telling it might save one life or many.
Two decades ago, my son, Garrett, died suddenly during the Type A Flu epidemic. The doctor misdiagnosed him as having the flu, and 24 hours later he died in his bed at home, sometime in the early morning hours.
I found him. But the odd thing is, I knew something was wrong the moment I woke up. I ran down the stairs toward his bedroom and screamed before I ever reached his door. I just knew.
I frantically jumped on top of him performing CPR, screaming his name, breathing my breath into his, but with no response. I wrapped my arms around his body and could feel he was still warm, but his lips were cold.
My husband and my three young children stood watching in horror, paralyzed by what was happening.
I kept trying to revive him with...
I left home at 16 to tour with a musical show, (took high school on the road), returned when I was 18 to graduate, then left again at 19, never returning to the nest again.
That’s the way I thought it would be with my own children. Once they graduated and went on to college, I could enjoy their visits and watch them become the people I always dreamed they would be.
I passionately loved being a mother, but having spread my four children so far apart, I was still changing diapers and reading bedtime stories to my baby when my oldest was 16. I added another to the family when my youngest son’s best friend came to live with us. Unexpectedly, I became a single mom for a huge portion of my children’s lives.
In 2010, when I dropped my last child off at Long Beach State, I celebrated. I had done it. I’d delivered all of my kids to the land of adulthood.
I had moments of “empty...