“How am I supposed to go on?”

fredIt’s a question that’s been haunting me for a few months now.

My friend, Amanda, lost her beautiful daughter, Amelia, to a tragic and senseless automobile accident earlier this year, and this has been a recurring question for her and so many that love Amelia ever since.  Now, in the wake of tragic events in Newtown, Connecticut, the circle of people asking this question continues to widen.

The wonderful Fred Rogers was a vegetarian, and I heard it recalled at one point that his rule for himself was that he wouldn’t eat anything that had a mother.  Likewise, I appeal to anyone with the power to exert lethal effects on another human to consider adopting a similar philosophy of not bringing harm to anyone who ever had a mother.

It was Fred Rogers who also recounted “When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.”   We see these helpers in every news reel and in every photo.  We see people crying alongside the grieving, and we see people reaching out with their hearts and hands to help in whatever way they are able.  Let’s be helpers and support each other with our love and prayers.

“How am I suppose to go on?”  I’m no closer to an answer, but I can tell you that these “left behind” people need our love, support, and patience as they struggle to answer this question for themselves.  At least that’s my take on it, and I hope yours is similar.  Tomorrow Begins Today. 

3 thoughts on ““How am I supposed to go on?”

  1. Losing a child is the greatest loss their is.I have lost a lot of people in my life, but none of it compares to losing your child. And no matter how old they are, they are your babies. Losing them in a traumatic way adds more to it. Nights are filled with why’s and what if’s. As a parent, you hold yourself accountable to protect your children. In Amelias case and the families in CT there was nothing that could be done, as parents, to protect our children any more, but you still question yourself. These families have a long way to go, and it is not an easy road. It has been 4 months for me and I know I have a lot further to go. I dont believe you ever “get over it” but you learn to cope with it better. Part of the problem in our society is that we are expected to be over it, and when you lose a child, there is no timeline for grief. I am doing much better at focusing at work now than I was before, there was a time when I just could not focus at all. I was like a zombie walking around trying to just make it minute by minute. There are moments and sometimes whole days where it still knocks the breath out of me. Seeing mothers with daughters Amelias age, trying to go to the store and seeing something she would like, hearing her friends talk about boyfriends and prom and things like that, it hurts to the core of my being. But I know I have to get up and keep going, Amelia would want that and my other children deserve it. These families are just beginning their grief, and I can attest that they are still in shock. I believe I was still in shock until recently, and then it really hit hard. What they need is friends and loved ones to support them, be there for them, and not to give any advice. That is what I truly believe has gotten me as far as I have gotten. Without that, I dont know where I would be today. Thank you for this blog Mike.

  2. Thanks, Mike. I only know Amanda in a professional sense, but when I heard of her sudden and tragic loss, our relationship felt personal. I reached out to her with what support and words of comfort I was able to offer. It is at times such as these that we are reminded how precious life truly is! I appreciate your articles and words of wisdom you bring to this blog. Thank you for reaching out to Amanda and for the thoughtfulness with which you write.

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