Grief is a sacred journey

Family and Friends

Regret: It’s Too Late Now, or Is It?

I sobbed myself to sleep the night after my brother Jim’s memorial service. The huge gathering went smoothly, including my reading, but something gnawed inside. In the middle of the night, I woke up with a knot in […]

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When the Dalai Lama Blessed the Children

When the Dalai Lama visited the United States for the first time in October 1979, he spent four days at Wisdom’s Goldenrod, a philosophy and meditation center near Seneca Lake in New York. Sidney Piburn, a friend and […]

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The Thief: When Cancer Returned

“I’m calling from Dana Farber,” a hushed male voice said on the phone. Oh no. It’s my brother. “Why are you at Dana Farber?” I asked in a quiet measured tone. Dana Farber Cancer Institute was where he […]

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The Queen Bee and the Honey Crone

“In Minoan Crete, the Goddess and her Priestesses, dressed as bees, are shown dancing together on a golden seal found buried with the dead.  …the bee signified the life that comes from death…. “Bee Goddess,” Temple of […]

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Honeybees and Humans: Our Sweet Interdependence

“I don’t see honeybees in the Shirley Poppies this year,” I said to my son David last summer. “Bees usually love them.” “Now that you mention it, I don’t have honeybees in my garden either,” he said. “I see […]

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The Half-Life of Love: Eight Years Later

The half-life of love is forever.  ~Junot Diaz, This Is How You Lose Her Eight years after my husband’s death, I carry our love in my heart pocket. I’m used to the ache. Longing doesn’t surprise me. I don’t […]

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The Caregiver and the Hero: Who’s in the Driver’s Seat?

Six weeks after my husband’s stem cell transplant in 2007, he drove our Subaru west on the New York State Thruway. A stocking cap covered his hairless head. I sat in the passenger seat. His jaw muscles popped […]

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Coming to Carry Him Home

After nearly three years of cancer therapy, my brother’s body was exhausted. There were no more options. Jim was dying. The previous week, I spent four days with him in his hospital room. We were often alone then. When […]

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Holding Hands on the Threshold between Life and Death

My brother’s cell phone sings its song. He slowly picks it up from the tray table and leans back into white pillows with closed eyes. He seemed close to death a few days ago, although he’s stable […]

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My Lover’s Mama and the Negative Mother Archetype

After I’d known him almost a year, Vic took me to Connecticut to meet his mother Virginia. I was a love-soaked girl of twenty-two. “She can be rough,” Vic warned me. “She has a temper.” “It will be […]

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