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Thursday, December 9, 2010

That was so kind of you!

Lighting up the lives of those coping with loss

Patriotic Christmas lights will add sparkle to the Roberts family, whose lives have been devastated by the death in Afghanistan of their beloved husband and father.

Random acts of kindness, people going out of their way to help both neighbors and strangers, in the simple hope of brightening someone else's day.

The holidays invoke such behavior, even the media, at this time, not only report the bad news, but focus on the good that happens everyday, often unnoticed.  You hear reports of anonymous donations, families being helped by strangers, patients receiving visits from local celebrities and sports figures.  It truly is a time of giving, a time for putting aside differences, and showing more kindness, compassion and caring. 

When I was told about this episode of the Today Show, I knew I had to share it here.  The last few posts I spoke of keeping the holiday traditions going, of beginning new traditions in memory of our loved ones, and just finding ways to keep them always present, and a part of our lives.  It was beautiful to see that this young soldier was very much a part of the family, and his legacy is very much alive for his family.  He continues to give even after he is gone. 

For those of us who are grieving during this time of year, we often find ourselves caught up in the emotional seesaw and we can't seem to find a way off of it.  It seems the beauty of the seasons can get lost, and a heaviness that we can't seem to shake, takes over.  But yet, so much seems to be happening all around us, so much is happening day to day.  People reach out to others in need, and in pain, sometimes through there own need and pain. 

Let me give you a hand!
My Godchild and my nephew
I have come to know that when I reach out to help someone else, I find my burden always feels lighter, much easier to carry some how.  When I have reached out through my own grief, to help others who are grieving, I found that my tears seem to give permission to their tears.  They, like me, knew it was safe, it was okay, this was someone who understands, who has traveled this road.  That first Christmas, and each subsequent Christmas has not been and still isn't easy.  I still struggle with my emotions, I still procrastinate, and still find it hard to believe, truly believe, that Rachel is gone.  Yet, I continue on, I smile and laugh, and I manage to find my way into the holiday spirit. 

We need to find ways to cope, to enjoy the holidays as best we can.  For me, hearing stories such as the one linked hear, does so much.  It helps me realize that our loved ones are not forgotten.  Our families and friends remember, and once in a while you receive a card, a call, or something shows up at your doorstep that you were not expecting.  And your loved one is remembered yet again. 

I love doing things in memory of Rachel, for me it gives meaning to her death.  It helps me find new and creative ways to honor her memory, to keep her memory alive and to include her in all our memorable events and times.  There are so many ways that you can find to help remember your loved one.  I stumbled upon a sight that list Ten healthy Ways to Remember a Deceased Loved One. and I found that I do some of these.  I especially find myself thinking of Rachel daily, speaking her name aloud, and I keep her photo on my desk besides her sister and brother, and the rest of the family.  

It is not an obsession, and anyone who has lost a loved one to death, knows exactly what I am speaking of.  When we speak and think of our loved ones, we are keeping them very present, very much a part of us.  Even if only one person remembers, their memory lives on for ever.  My goal is to have my daughter's memory live on, and why shouldn't I, or anyone else for that matter.  They lived, they loved and they were very much a part of our lives.  

So let your loved one's memory live on.  Love never ends, as is evident from the segment linked above.

Blessings! and until we meet again.


  1. Rose Mary, Thank you for this post. I am going to check out that site about ten healthy ways to remember a deceased loved one. I agree it is not an obsession, it is something we just want/need to do. You are inspirational in how you are dealing with the loss of your daughter. You probably hear that all the time, but it's true.

  2. Nancy, thank you for your kind words.

    You are doing a fine job of inspiring others as well. I love your blog, and the insight you provide to others who are coping with cancer.

    May God continue to bless you during this holiday season, and all throughout the year.

    Love, Rose Mary xoxoxo