Another year passes

image

We rise by lifting others.

You may have noticed I haven’t posted over the holidays. This is a first. I typically post some healthy information to help grieving parents get through the holidays. This year, I took some time away from this blog to heal. It’s been 13 long years since my Brittany passed and the raw emotion of it all got to me this holiday more than the last few holidays.

During this time I realized everyone who grieves needs a break from grieving. A time to focus on yourself and your healing. We all know that grief doesn’t take a break. It relentlessly pursues us and follows us wherever we go. Grief seeks us out in the most unpredictable places and reminds us of our loss(es).

When I look back at the years and years of posts, I am in awe of my journey and the places grief has taken me. I have met some of the most amazing people who are now my “framily”. Framily is the label we give to those we have chosen to be in our inner circle. Our confidants, our mentors, our sisters and brothers in life, those who would give you the shirt of their back and show up at your doorstep just when you need them. Sometimes even before you need them. I am forever grateful to those who I’ve known who have gone the distance with me. To those who met me where I was and listened to me endlessly talk about my Brittany. It’s not lost on me their love and support these many years.

This year I want to be a year of taking action to help others more. To be there for them in their moments. To walk the walk. I would love to hear in your comments below what topics you’d like for me to write about. This is your blog now, it is my story woven into the how, the why and the what of grief.

My book is in the editing phase and I hope to have that complete soon. I’ll keep you all posted on the progress.

Here’s to 2020 and may you find healing and support with your “framily”.

Until next time,

Mal

Motherless at the Holidays

I know I mostly post here about losing my daughter but this article really hit me. I lost my mom when I was 31 and pregnant with my only child. At various points throughout my adult life; I have reflected on my moms death and remembered how angry I was for months. I grieved in such a way that often left me numb and filled with emptiness. A daughter always needs her mama. Always! Even today I so wish I could get a big hug from her. Talk to her. Get advice and counsel from her.

But I cannot. The hole in my life created by her death is and always will be a defining moment in my life.

M

Forever 17

As I remember my Brittany today, I know she is spending her birthday in the presence of God and that I’m so very thankful for. I miss her terribly and on this day it’s not lost on me the gratitude I have that she was given to me for a short time not to exist but to live and give lessons to those whom she came to know.

So now our job is to release the pain, give it to God and walk in gratitude for the time we had and walk forward in love to those who are still with us.

Many thanks and gratitude I have for you all as we walk on this journey together.

Until next time,

M

Credit: TobyMac #speaklife, Lysa Terkeurst

Don’t be afraid of the dark

I saw this quote from Toby Mac and it resonated with me as I reflected on this time of year. The period between Brittany’s angel date and her birthday I spend a great deal of time thinking about her. How much I miss her and remembering how tough the early days were.

I cannot tell you how much of my time in those early days and weeks after Brittany’s death I spent either laid out on the floor or on my knees praying for my life; questioning why my girl and begging God to remove the pain.

Each time God responded but not always how I would have liked. What I know is God never left my side. I felt his presence every step of the way. Psalms provided healing to my broken heart and Job helped me understand I wasn’t alone in my grief. That there would be a restoration to what was lost.

My faith has remained strong over these last 13 years – although not perfect I know the restoration will come perhaps not on my timeline but Gods.

#tobymac #speaklife

Until next time

Mal

Tears still show up unexpectedly…

Age 15

Reminiscing through photos of my late daughter and this one popped up and my heart sank but at the same time brought me such joy because this picture to me speaks to her heart. Her soul was so rich with love and humor.

I miss her so much. I keep avoiding thinking about it – but even after 13 years, the tears come quickly if I let them.

#grief #griefjourney #griefandloss #griefsucks #sheismyheavenlyangel

Until next time,

M

October 13 – 13 years

As I laid in bed last night I couldn’t help but remember where I was exactly at that moment 13 years ago. Sitting in the PICU at Brittany’s bedside praying for a miracle as she continued to get worse throughout the night. It’s hard to believe it’s been 13 years. In space in time, it seems like a lifetime ago; but yet my heart feels like it was yesterday.
What I am thankful for are the people who knew her well, continue to remember her for the wonderful quirky and loving soul she was to all of us. Her best friends still send me notes honoring her memory on this day each year. This year has been no different.
I’m sitting here now in the beautiful landscape of the North Carolina mountains with people who understand my pain, allow me to be and do whatever I need to do whether it be cry, laugh, grieve, or just remain quiet in the sweet memories of my sweet girl.
I’m so grateful.

Until next time,

M

A Grown Woman ALWAYS Needs Her Mama

This picture is one of my favorites of my mom and me. I’m not sure how old I was, thinking maybe eight or nine years of age. Which means my mom was in her mid-late 20’s. She was the best mom. She loved her children and worked to keep food on the table and clothes on our backs. She was a single mother. Working three jobs at times to make sure we stayed together as a family.

Today she would have celebrated her 79th birthday. That seems so far fetched given she died at the young age of 48 on September 16th, 1988. Just a few days after we celebrate her 48th birthday.

What is staggering is I’ve lived half my life without her. But those first 31 years she prepared me to be a mom; to be a strong and successful woman; and to live through the most unimaginable grief. She taught me the importance of having a strong work ethic. She taught me right from wrong. She taught me that I was so much more than I thought I could be. She believed in me. She was my best friend. And every day I think of her and know she walks along my life with me, guiding my way.

There are days when I just wish I could get a hug from her. She gave the best hugs ever. She wrote the most amazing letters to me and I have them today. I treasure them with all of my heart.

Here is what I know – You are never too old to want your mama, to need your mama. I also know she has my Brittany with her. I feel them all around me protecting me, keeping me moving forward, even on days when it just doesn’t feel right.

Grief sucks…

Until next time

M