Posts Tagged "parenting through grief"

Grieving Daddy’s Death

»Posted on Apr 20, 2010 in BLOG, DROP DEAD LIFE, Parenting & Loss | 0 comments

Tatiana, my eight-year-old daughter, begins to cry. “Mom-my! I’m not talking to you. You are making me so sad.” Her curly blonde hair flies everywhere, as if being blown by a fan. She stomps into the bathroom, slams the door, and locks herself in. All morning, Tatiana has not been listening, and I’m fed up with having to repeat my words six times just to be heard. Deep breath, I tell myself. I call through the bathroom door, “Honey, come out here.” To my surprise, she twists the knob right away, but her sobs continue rising like a helicopter. “Come sit here.” Tatiana curls in my lap, making her lanky body compact. She blows her nose on her orange sunflower dress. “I know we’ve all had colds and that you’ve been...

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Mommy Guilt: Widowed or Not

»Posted on Mar 2, 2010 in BLOG, DROP DEAD LIFE, Parenting & Loss | 0 comments

Guilt. Mommy guilt. Daddy died guilt. Always the guilt. Each morning, at 6 AM, Julian, 2, calls out, “Ma Ma. Ma Ma? Ma Ma,” and the race begins. Ugh! I shouldn’t have stayed up so late. Four kids, like newly hatched spiders, crawl up my skin. They nip at my arms, my shoulders, my feet, and I want to flick them off. I want five minutes, just five freaking minutes, to make my coffee, before I get them ready for school. “Clothes on, hair brushed, then come to the table for breakfast,” I command, but they continue to swarm, completely ignoring my orders. “Ewwwwwww!” Tatiana, 8, screams, as she holds her Hello Kitty toothbrush an inch from my swollen brown eyes. “Tati, WHAT are you doing?” “Mommy, Juju...

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Pregnant Widow Shutting Down

»Posted on Oct 15, 2009 in BLOG, Coping With Loss, Death Of Spouse, DROP DEAD LIFE | 0 comments

Tatiana clings to me, her legs wrapped beneath my 9-month pregnant belly, while the other Marin Day School toddlers push balls, rakes, miniature vacuums, and each other around in the outdoor play area of the preschool. Primary colored toys are scattered everywhere—many of which Erik had cleaned only two months before, when he donated his time to Tatiana’s school to make some “minor repairs.” Erik was supposed to fix a couple of loose locks over a weekend, but the teachers returned to a new garden of potted flowers, re-stained benches and sandbox, and a large rainbow play-structure that had been flipped and scrubbed from bottom to top. When he walked through the metal gate to bring Tatiana there the next day, the entire staff gave him a standing...

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11-Year-Old Boy Tries to Save his Father

»Posted on Oct 12, 2009 in BLOG, DROP DEAD LIFE, Parenting & Loss, Sudden Death | 0 comments

Erik told me about his dad, Hayden, when we first started dating. We were both 20, both students at Florida State University. Erik majored in computer science while I studied creative writing. Within days of knowing one another, it was obvious that Erik’s rational, organized side would compliment the artist in me. Erik spoke slowly, with quiet intensity. “We were on vacation.” I sat cross-legged, on Erik’s bedroom floor, soaking in the masculine whisper of his words. My attention was focused entirely on him. He stretched out on his back and put his head in my lap, his eyes directed at the circulating ceiling fan. “We were on vacation, at the beach . . . I was eleven. It was just me, my mom, and my dad. My dad had brought me out...

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Erik Grieve 1973 – 2003, Life is Not About the Dates on Either Side, But the Hyphen in Between

»Posted on Sep 7, 2009 in BLOG, Coping With Loss, Death Of Spouse, DROP DEAD LIFE, Parenting & Loss, Sudden Death | 0 comments

I walked in slow-motion towards Erik’s closed, mahogany casket. The old stone chapel was filled with familiar faces. There were faces from Skywalker Ranch and other Lucas parties, faces I had photographed in my studio, faces from my bridal shower, my wedding, and Tatiana’s birth. I kept my head down. As the pregnant widow, all eyes were on me, but I did not want to be seen. Direct eye contact would break me open in a way that I would not be ready to be broken open for years. Dressed in an ankle-length maternity skirt, long-sleeve black shirt, and the comfortable three-inch heels that had taken me hours to find just the day before, I sat in the front pew. My brother, Troy, and his wife, Jen, sat next to me. Only ten feet separated us from the blanket of...

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