capture your grief – day 3: twilight of memory


I remember when Kade was little, he loved dinosaurs. I mean, he LOVED dinosaurs. We frequented the natural history museum (that is now such a wistful place to be with my youngest), had many dinosaur books, and schooled the adults in his life on how to pronounce them.

I also remember when he read one of his childhood books, Dinosaur Roar, to his baby brother. Be still my beating heart!



capture your grief 2019 – oct. 1: sunrise ritual

I got up with the sun (and the son).

20191001_065720Unfortunately our eastern sky in Lone Tree CO was SOCKED IN at sunrise.


I like how today’s prompt is called Sunrise Ritual.

Ritual. It can be so comforting.

This morning’s ritual, the first day of Capture Your Grief, is a comfort to me.

I’m remembering several years, now, getting up on October 1st. Some mornings crisp, wearing Kade’s flannel. With intention, getting up in the dark, quietly getting my things, and driving to an expansive place where I could watch the sun crest.

I’ve actually been counting the days to Capture Your Grief this year. I think I crave structured outlet for my grief. It’s so easy to go along with my days and weeks and weekends; months and seasons; work, family, play; and not intentionally attend to my grief. To Kade. Opportunities like this help me drop in to my feelings. My soul. My spirit. My grief. My continuing relationship with my son.

I’ll sip my cafe latte and toast to the damp sunrise. Here’s to an October of capturing my grief.

And my love.

20191001_06552520191001_065511Capture Your grief is an expressive activity created by CarlyMarie, an artist and bereaved mom in Australia. She has a prompt for each day to take a photograph to capture your grief. When she posts her daily photo on Facebook, participants can comment with theirs.


Capture Your Grief website:

CarlyMarie’s Facebook page:

blogging a to z april challenge – q

q – question

A bereaved dad friend told me that when he asked, Why?! His answer became…There is no why.

I’m not sure who it was that said that when they asked Why, they turned it in to…What now? I’m pretty sure that was Dr. Joanne Cacciatore, one of my grief heroes.

There is no why.

What now?

These have helped some with those repeated, often terrible, resounding, and unanswerable questions.

Disclaimer – this post has nothing to do with my theme of grad school and everything to do with what I could think of to write about for q. 

blogging a – z april challenge – p

p – pain

Did you know counseling is not to fix pain? Or solve problems? Or give advice? It is to help people build their capacity to carry their pain, live with their circumstances, and learn skills to work toward solving their problems. We are to be great collaborators and not so great advice-givers.

Sometimes I want a pill to take away my pain.

I guess I’m not alone because look around at the numbing with substances (drugs, alcohol, food), devices (screens), and other things (shopping, perfectionism). Because numbing does not work and causes additional problems, I guess that leaves me with facing this intolerable pain. And developing skills for coping with it.

I’d still rather there be a grief or discomfort pill…

But since there’s not, I’ll…

See my counselor

Be a counselor

Go to a group

Lead a group activity




Participate in Blogging A – Z April Challenge

Plan a trip

Take a road trip with girlfriends

Go on a hike


Get out my mat and do a Yoga with Adriene

Engage in numbing behavior like Facebook


One of my favorite movie scenes:


blogging a – z april challenge – o

o – owning

School helped me move toward owning my stuff. Through my grief and school education I am learning to own the freakin’ hard things. I work toward owning my grief, my reality, and my lot. I don’t LIKE it (I can own that); I wish it was different.

We counselors are trained to see what is sped past in the counseling room. The uncomfortable whiffs of topics, the ones that make a person get momentarily small in their chair, smile or laugh, perhaps hide their face behind their hand, or wince for the briefest moment. And name it. And stay there for a tolerable moment. And examine it.

And work toward owning it.



blogging a to z april challenge – n

n – numinous

I didn’t know the word before one of my first classes: Spirituality and Counseling.

numinous – adjective
nu·mi·nous | \ ˈnü-mə-nəs
Definition of numinous
2 : filled with a sense of the presence of divinity : HOLY
3 : appealing to the higher emotions or to the aesthetic sense : SPIRITUAL

Isn’t it a great word?

Much of my life has an element of the numinous now. After all, my son is “on the other side of the veil.” My Spirituality and Counseling class and entire grad school experience were no exceptions.

We got to share a 5-minute story in class on something numinous we experienced in our lives. I told about a time Kade “threw me” a couple signs—two stars in a row. Briefly, when I was feeling really down on the way to a child loss support group I saw a star illuminated in the foothills at precisely the time I needed it. Then, wondering if it was Kade, or god, or a higher power, or what, I was thrown a second one—an actual shooting star across the view of my windshield. Whelp, that cemented it for me—to me it was a sign that Kade was OK. And somehow, with me.

I loved hearing the other stories of my classmates’ numinous experiences. That class was one of my favorite memories at Regis.

I’d like to hear from you. What is a numinous experience you’ve you had?

star and girl image