Tag Archives: Death and Dying

Morning Cocoa

If we were to meet for cocoa…

I would tell you that today feels like a Monday.  Ben took a 4-day weekend and boy did we soak it up.  We went on a date and used an actual baby-sitter.  Right as we were walking out the door, Andrew fell and bit his lip.  Lots of blood, lots of tears, and a wonderful baby-sitter who calmly took charge.

Over the weekend, I saw Sue, my nurse practitioner.  After having me do a few balance tests, she decided a specialist would be the next best option to figure out this nausea.  Oh how grateful I am for Sue.

After an incredibly hard week last week, I was able to meet with a therapist and start medication for my anxiety and depression.  It takes about a month for me to notice any difference, which slightly scares me, but I am thankful for my supportive husband who helped me tremendously during his 4-day mini-vacation.

I would tell you that today is a mellow day.  I received a phone call that my grandmother died this morning.  I had mixed feelings when I heard she had passed away.  She had suffered from Parkinson’s for at least ten years now.  For the last five, dementia has settled in leaving her vastly different from the grandma I grew up with.  While I am sad to say good-bye, I am grateful she has been released from her physical and mental pain.

I would share our latest exciting news: our final decision for where we will attend medical school.  Watch out Midwest, our family is headed in that direction!

I would refill your cup and tell you how wonderful a warm beverage is on these cold, winter months.  My dear husband fixed our stroller last night so the kids and I will be able to get out, but walking in the cold weather isn’t exactly thrilling–not in a pleasurable manner anyway.

I would give you another hug and tell you to stay as long as you’d like.  It’s nice to visit with an old and good friend.

Grab a mug of something warm (or cold for those in different parts of the world) and tell me, what would you share?

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Conversations About Death

“Do you ever think about how you are going to die?”  Mr. B asked one night.

I rolled my eyes.  “No. I prefer to dwell on less morbid topics,  things pertaining to living.”

“Well,  if you could choose which way to die,  what would you choose?”  Mr. B. continued.

“Um,  I think that I’d rather not answer that seeing that I really have no choice in the matter,”  I quipped.

“I think I’m going to die of a heart attack or in a car accident,”  he calmly stated. “I’d prefer something that would immortalize me.”

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“Would you go back to school if I died?”  Mr. B inquired during a drive home one night.

“Probably,”  I nonchalantly responded.

“For a Master’s?”  he asked.

“Well, I would start with a Master’s in therapy then  continue on with my Ph.D.  Since you’d be dead and all, I guess I’d have nothing to hold me back,”  I slyly answered.

“Good choice.  Remember,  you have some good money coming your way when I die,”  he stated.

“True.  What are you waiting for?”

“Great question.”

******************

“I would love to develop cancer,”  B longingly stated one afternoon.  “If I did,  would you support medicinal marijuana?”

“Um, no.”  I exclaimed.  “Why would I want you to develop cancer?  Just for marijuana?”

“Yes.  I’d smoke chronic and go to IHOP with you guys!  Sure,  I’d be in pain but at least I’d be laughing!” he explained.

“Yeah,  and I would be sad because I’d miss you if you died,”  I responded.

“No.  I wouldn’t die,  I would miraculously recover and live another 20 years!” he proclaimed.

*****************

Does your husband enjoy tormenting you with questions about death?  Because this topic is a favorite of my husband’s.

No, my husband is not suicidal.  He’s just weird.  I guess we all have our idiosyncracies, right?

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Somtimes Words Just Fail Us

While driving to the funeral last Saturday, my husband and I sat in uncharacteristic silence, absorbed in our own thoughts.  Interestingly enough, we were wrapped in the same emotion: anger.  It did not seem fair that my cousin was experiencing such a tragic loss.  She is a good, loving, mom!

To top it off, we were going to the funeral with our 2-month-old infant.  To us, it seemed like flaunting our bounty.  I’m sure if we could, we would have left Manly home.

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When I walked into the funeral home and saw my cousin, I didn’t know what to say.  I did the only thing I knew how to do, I gave her a hug, several actually.

She inquired after Manly and asked to see him.  I saw the joy–and the hurt–in her eyes.  At that moment, I realized something: denying her the opportunity to see our baby would have added to her pain.

In trying to shield my cousin from more hurt, I would have added to it.  I am grateful that we did take Manly.  I am grateful that she was able to see our son.  I am grateful because I know it comforted her, in some small way.

*************

As we proceeded to the graveside service, Ben offered profound insight.

“Amber, we are angry and we have no right to be angy. ”

“What do you mean?”

“J and K have a right to be angry.  Yet, they aren’t.  Yes, they are sad.  Yes, their hearts ache.  Yet, through this experience, they have acquired a more intimate knowledge about the Plan of Salvation and they cling to this belief.  They have faith.  Our anger is, in some ways, bringing more pain into this service.  We need to focus on them, rather than ourselves.”

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J dedicated the grave.  His words echoed what Ben had said.  His beautiful prayer– and faith– provided me with hope.

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I have tried to write this post in many ways.  There are just no words to adequately describe the funeral and graveside service.  Nothing that can justify the pain J and K are experiencing.

What amazes me was how they comforted those around them.

I can only end this by sharing my testimony.  As you know, I am a Mormon.  I believe, we believe, that their is a life after this one.  We believe that families are Eternal.  We believe that we will meet loved ones in the next life that we have lost in this life.

I know that this knowledge comforts J and K.  The sorrow will never disappear.  The sadness will always be present.  Yet, they find peace in their belief–and knowledge– of Eternal families.

J and K–I am sorry for your loss.  I love you and will  continue to pray for you.  Thank you for allowing us to take part such a treasured service.

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Today is the Funeral

Today I am going to a funeral. My cousin’s baby was stillborn. My heart is breaking for her loss.

If you would, please remember my cousin and her family in your thoughts and prayers. She is hurting.

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