Pain runs deep. Grief scars are powerful, and sink into the darkest recesses of the heart. Catastrophic wounds can throw us into survival mode for a while.
No matter how old the wound, with the right trigger, the pain can become incredibly fresh again.
Grief is like that. And it’s especially challenging during the holiday season.
One Sunday afternoon when I was fifteen, my dad had a massive heart attack and collapsed in front of me. They resuscitated him at the hospital, but he never regained consciousness. For a week I sat by his bed and talked about anything and everything that came into my mind.
I knew he wasn’t going to make it.
Holidays can be naturally hard. When you’ve lost someone, special days can seem impossible.
“I’m scared. It’s like I’m frozen and can’t move. How am I going to face our anniversary without him?” said Tina, whose husband Frank died.
“When I look ahead to Father’s Day, all I can think about is him,” said Jeff, who lost his father.
“It’s not like they’re family.”
That was the original title of the book I promised to write. It was the spring of 2006, and I was sitting in the coffeehouse around the corner from my daughter’s school. My friend, Delle, sat across from me, sipping her green tea chai latte.