Tag Archives: grief

The Kindness of Strangers

No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted. Aesop

Well here I am camped out at a hotel near the airport in Boston. I have a wonderful view out my window of what looks like a tank farm. Fuel for the Airplanes perhaps?

Everyone here at the hotel could not be kinder to me. I went down to the desk yesterday morning to extend my stay. I began telling the clerk that I had to stay longer because my grandson’s funeral mass is not until Saturday morning. As soon as those words were out of my mouth the floodgates opened and I began sobbing uncontrollably. The people standing there at the desk comforted me, patted my hands, and stroked my back.

Standing around me was an assortment of flight attendants, pilots and various other travelers. They did their best to console me, a total stranger. I was so grateful to them. Like ripples in a pond, I think this time of sorrow gives others an opportunity to think about their own troubles and loved ones. I bet they took time to talk to their family and friends and tell them loved them. I would like to think that anyway. Life is too short to let squabbles and hurts get in the way of loving those close to you.

The desk clerk started typing away furiously and offered me every discount she could think of…senior citizen, military and whatever else they could find. When they were finished punching the magic buttons my bill went from $160 per night down to $100 per night. I am so grateful.

So anyone can make a difference in someone else’s life. The opportunity may come at you out of the blue at a moment’s notice. Never pass up a chance to show kindness to a stranger. You may never know how much it touches their heart.

Thank you, dear readers, for listening.

A Thief in the Night

For you know very well that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. 1 Thessalonians 5:2 New International Version

Beloved Christopher, Rest in Peace

My dear readers, the thief in the night came quicker than I thought. My darling grandson, Christopher age 26, was found dead at 5:30 am Saturday morning. My heart is broken at the loss of a sweet but troubled young man. When he first started talking he named me “Grandma Vick.” I was happy with that, because he had another grandma so that was his way of telling us apart.

What is even worse than this loss is the grief I feel for my daughter, my own baby, who has lost her beautiful son, her baby boy. I was with her when he was born, and love the both of them so much it hurts.

Christopher was a young man with a big chip on his shoulder. His father died young from either a suicide of drug overdose. He has suffered for years with mental illness, and drug addiction. Recently he was living in a homeless shelter for veterans. From what I can gather so far, he got in an argument with someone in the shelter and was either kicked out or left. He stormed off and went into a train station. Boston’s temperature lately has been in the low 30’s lately. He probably feel asleep or passed out from drugs or alcohol and succumbed to that and hypothermia.

So today I’m in Boston to be with my daughter to offer any support I can give her. We need to make arrangements to lay Christopher to rest. I’ve had a lot of trouble and arguments with my daughter, but there is no way that I could live with myself if I did not come to her side in this most painful time that any parent will ever experience, the loss of a child.

All I can ask of you is please pray for Christopher, his mother and family in our time of sorrow.

Thank you for listening.

Sometimes Denial is a Good Thing

My mother-in-law’s twin sister passed away peacefully last night. We knew it was coming since the massive stroke she had 5 days ago. I told myself well “she will be in a better place; she’s not suffering anymore, yada, yada. Well you know what? It’s not OK; it sucks big hairy donkey balls.

For while I had 3 mothers – a mother and twin mother-in-laws. How lucky can a person be? So I was in denial thinking it would be better when she passed, but it’s not. I guess the denial helped me deal with the waiting. You can’t hide from grief. You can tell yourself all the things you hear people about the loss of a loved one but it doesn’t help. Nothing helps. Grief is just something you have to pass through and come out the other side. Like birth or death, it’s not something you can avoid or talk your way out of it.

It kind of helps a tiny bit to think of her in funny moments. Like the times she would sit there in the kitchen with her sister in the morning, drinking coffee wearing a mu mu and a hairnet or curlers. It’s funny to think of her favorite thing to say when someone annoyed her. She would bark “why don’t you just go shit in your hat.” I don’t wear hats, but I still think that’s funny.

At our wedding I was so used to her and my mother-in-law looking exactly alike that I forgot to inform my family that she had an identical twin. My aunt came up to me and asked “why does your mother-in-law keep changing her dress?” Now that’s funny.

So we all have to walk this road and deal with our grief as best we can. It’s a process and it just takes time.

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