by Pat Taylor, CKN Editor
“Small, slow steps. Don’t stride. Don’t rush. If you rush, you’ll fall, or burn out. Either one could kill you. Take small, slow steps. Small, slow steps and you will get there.” It’s Valentine’s Day, and my brother’s words repeat over and over in my mind like a record skipping, as I climb the snowy hillside above our ranch with freezing feet and shattered heart.
by Debs Wilkinson, Bereaved Wife
As we are approaching mid-December and the festive season is in full swing, I’m constantly reminded about my late husband Peter. Christmas to me was Peter. He adored every single aspect of the Christmas season from decorating the tree, to planning/cooking the gorgeous feast, he even wore Christmas jumpers before they came back in fashion!
by Sue McKechnie, CKN Editor
One of the greatest fears of a bereaved parent is that their passed child will be forgotten. With the holiday season upon us, this feeling is more acute as loved ones gather together.
In the early years of our bereavement, I wanted so badly to buy Shawn, our 3 year old who had passed away from a brain tumour, a gift. Something under the tree so he knew that we hadn’t forgotten about him and that he was still in our hearts and minds every day. Each and every time I stopped myself though. One night, close to Christmas Eve, I decided to write him a letter. I told him how much he was missed, how much we loved him and placed the note in his stocking, hung beside everyone else’s. This felt like the right way to include him in our holiday season and has been my tradition since his passing in 2007.
by Evelyn Santiago
“The most powerful force on earth is the human soul on fire”–unknown
Mentally, death takes a toll on all of us. My mother couldn’t accept that she was dying. She was a born fighter and she wasn’t going to be put down by anything.
I remember one incident crystal clear shortly before she passed away. She had been getting progressively weaker and lost a lot of weight. I was home taking care of her but at the time I was in my room upstairs. I heard a loud thump and rushed downstairs. It was my mom on the bathroom floor. She had tried to go to the bathroom and fell in the process. I tried moving her a little bit but I could tell she was in excruciating pain. I quickly grabbed two pillows and put them under her backside while she waited on the floor. I grabbed my cell phone and called hospice. Because I wasn’t able to pick her up by myself, I also called my husband to see if he could get her off the floor. Meanwhile, hospice sent an ambulance to evaluate my mother.