The quick rip

I seem to be making it through the craziness that is September. The 11th was a strange day that left me practically unable to walk for two days. I am always caught off guard by the physical effects of emotion. I did 3 radio interviews and then headed down to KOMO TV station in Seattle and did an interview for TV Ontario’s show, The Agenda with Steve Paikin. It was an interesting show, having to do with the idea of “moving on.” I am not sure we came to any great conclusions, but it was an interesting discussion.

Olivia’s presentation was extremely well received. Her teacher told her it was one of the most powerful presentations the eighth grade had ever seen. Other teachers told me how poised and clear and confident she was. A lot of the kids cried. I think she was really proud of herself. She has discovered that she can have a quiet power on this tough day, a lesson that will serve her well in years to come.

I have also gotten through another birthday. And coming up on the 29th, what would have been our 18th wedding anniversary. The anniversary always makes me wonder where we might have been now, if Arron were still alive. Would we still be together? Still living in NJ? Would we both still be working the same jobs? The anniversary seems to bring out the “could have’s” more than any other event for some reason.

I will be spending that day in Vancouver speaking about grief to a group of ALS caregivers. I have no doubt that it will be a humbling experience. In thinking about my audience, I can’t help wondering, what is worse? The quick “no goodbye” death, or the slow decline of one’s body? Is it like Band Aids? The quick rip, preferable to the slow pull? Is being able to say goodbye to your loved ones and making proper arrangements for your own demise better than not being able to say goodbye?

Finally, despite having a blog myself, I have been flung into the world of blogs. I had no idea that so many existed out there. My book will be the subject of a “blog tour” in December, where several (12 actually) blog people will read my book and post reviews on their sites. I will be available to answer questions, which they will post as well. I have discovered some pretty amazing blogs, just in reviewing the ones that are interested in my book.

See my page at TLC Book Tours and scroll down the page and click on the “tour stops” links.

Seems like there is an entire support network for widowed, single moms that I never knew existed. I am comforted by that.

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  1. lisamm September 24, 2008 at 11:26 pm

    My next door neighbor’s husband died of ALS in 2001. When he was diagnosed he was given 3 years to live, and he died almost exactly 3 years to the day later. My kids were 2 and 3 years old when “Papa Bill” died. They didn’t understand where he went and it was hard to explain it to them. It was really hard to watch his body wither away even while his mind was still sharp. He had always been so active- running and riding his bike daily. It was a very difficult and very long goodbye for his family, but they did get the chance to say all the things they wanted to say before he was gone, and I know they were grateful for that opportunity.

  2. Les September 26, 2008 at 5:58 am

    Hi. I found my way to your blog via Lisa's Books on the Brain.

    Our 24-year-old daughter was killed on 5/28/05 and I'd have to say that losing her so suddenly (and violently) had to be worse than a slow decline from an illness could ever be. But as you're probably aware, all losses and grief are so personal, who's to say which is really worse. Is a murder worse than suicide? Is the loss of a child worse than a loss of a spouse? It's all very painful, especially around those anniversary dates.

    I'm interested in your book and will take a look at work (B&N). Meanwhile, I'll start reading your archives.

    You can find me at my book blog or my blog about our daughter.

    Take care.

  3. Abigail September 28, 2008 at 1:46 pm


    Thank you for visiting my blog. I just visited all of your blogs and was touched to tears by your letters to Rachel.

    No death is easy. I struggled with the 9/11-ness of Arron’s death, trying to figure out why people seemed to consider it to be different than any other. I still struggle with that. Arron died, and that was all that mattered to me.

    In the end, that is all that matters.


  4. Andrew July 18, 2009 at 12:33 am

    Great to read this..

    This is pretty interesting…

    Thanks for sharing..
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