My teenager is growing up, and I’m the one who’s crying

My second daughter, Abi’s sister, is growing up. OK, that’s not surprising and I should be thankful, she has now surpassed Abi’s age by three years. Yet, now, aged 15, I see this young woman transformed before me. The same height as me, the same determined look in her eye, the same belief that she […]

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The friends you need through loss

When a friend is grieving, it’s hard to know what to do, how to act, what to say. There’s a lot of criticism for those friends who haven’t ‘been through it’ themselves. These are often the same people who say unhelpful things such as ‘they had a good life’, ‘at least… [insert anything]’, ‘God only […]

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From cradle to grave

Today, I took my 9-year-old son to his football match. It’s normally Dad who does the football matches, but it had been almost a year since I’d seen my son play due to having the new baby and he asked if I’d go and watch him. He’s been appreciating some one-to-one time with me of […]

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You don’t have to ‘get over’ your grief just because it’s Christmas

It’s no surprise that Christmas is a difficult time for the grieving. For us, the period begins with Abi’s birthday at the end of November, we then have the four weeks until Christmas and then New Year, followed not long afterwards by the anniversary of the time we lost her. Next February will be four […]

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Forgiveness Series: 4. Forgiving yourself

One of the hardest aspects of grief – as a grieving parent – is forgiving yourself. Children die every day. And, for every child that has left this world, is a parent left wondering what they did wrong, how they could have prevented it, why they weren’t in their child’s place. Abi’s death could not […]

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Forgiveness Series: 3. The Fourfold Path of Forgiveness

In The Book of Forgiving, Desmond & Mpho Tutu offer a process called ‘The Fourfold Path’, which helps us to move from a position of anger and resentment to one of forgiveness and (inner and outer) peace. This part makes up most of the book, but I have outlined the basic elements of the path below: […]

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I can’t let go of my children’s toys!

We’ve been having a bit of a clear out, which we need to do fairly frequently with six of us in the house. Our boys’ bedroom had become very cluttered with toys, clothes, books and teddies. We tidied it up but decided that as the large buckets of teddies weren’t played with much at all […]

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The fine line between love and hate

Shocking celebrity deaths, Brexit and now Donald Trump… if anything, you can’t say 2016 has been boring! Trump is not a man I like, his views worry me and the fact he now is one of the most powerful men in the world worries me even more. However, through the how’s and why’s, I’m trying […]

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Grief is a thiefΒ 

While death is something I accept as part of life, the impact of a death, especially that of my child, troubles me. Her death has been and gone, she is at rest now, yet the ripples of that loss pass over me constantly. I’ve largely accepted that she’s not coming back, I’m making the best of […]

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The hardest thing to admit…

After you’ve lost a child, you somehow find ways to live on. You don’t actively seek ways to help your situation, the adjustment sort of happens by itself. When people say to you ‘I don’t know how you cope’, you look at them blankly, and most likely simply say ‘I just do’. But it makes […]

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