Cheryl's Blog

For those who have loved and lost

The hummingbirds are still here! I yelled to Michael as I ran to the window to get a closer look. I was rereading a passage from Kris Carr’s new book, “I Am Not a Mourning Person” when I heard the familiar buzzing in the garden. One minute I’m wiping tears from my face thinking about my own Dad’s death as Kris writes about the final moments with hers, and the next I’m filled with joy at the unexpected surprise.

Life is strange. Nearly every day we’re challenged to strengthen the emotional muscles that hold the tension of the opposites. Opposites like “I want to be there for others,” and “I need to take care of myself.” Or, “I don’t want to think about death,” and “I want to be prepared for the inevitable.” “My heart is breaking,” and “I’m grateful to be alive.”

It’s part of the sweet messiness of life and one of the things I appreciate about Kris is how she writes about this messiness with tender vulnerability and a clever sense of humor. At times, I laughed out loud at the stories in her book, like the part about hospice and porn or grief-illiterate comments. Then, I wanted to curl up alongside her and weep in solidarity because there are few things that unite us like grief and loss.

Experience is such a wise teacher. Over time we realize that what we need to ride the tumultuous waves of change with increasing steadiness is simple:

Feel what you feel, sweetheart.
Remember, this too shall pass.
Come back to the present moment.
Rinse and repeat.

More than thirty years ago, when I had my first up-close-and-personal encounter with death, I was grateful for Elizabeth Kubler-Ross and her books. She offered a helpful roadmap for navigating death and dying and I devoured every word. Today, Kris Carr adds her wisdom to the mix with a brave and honest account of what it takes to confront the loss of loved ones – both human and pets – and live to tell the story.

We need more of these stories, the ones that will carry us through the land of grief because those we’ve loved and lost are worthy of our sadness.

Thank you, Kris Carr ❤️.


P.S. –I’m heading to Omega in twelve days to join a wonderful group of people who are excited to explore the wisdom years. There’s still time to join us the weekend of October 6th-8th. You can get more info here.