Wednesday, March 16, 2016

#SOL16:The Boy Who Lost His Father

One Boat (Alaska, 2007)

After the shock wears, a moat opens up and fills--separating me from most everyone else, save Devon.

How are you doing?
How do you feel?
You okay?
You'll feel better soon.
Time to move on.
Are you planning to sell your house?
Don't make any changes for the next year.
You'll love again.
I'm sorry for your loss.

Normal is so far away.
A boat in a bay I cannot reach.


Devon started back to school on Tuesday and the night before we talked about Michael.

"Michael," I tell him, "was a high school student more than two decades ago. He told me months after he came back to school after the death of his father that I was one of the few teachers who didn't situate him as 'the boy who lost his dad.'"

"Yeah," says Devon.

"I get it that you don't want to go back to school and be that boy. The boy whose father died. I imagine your teachers will not limit you to that role. Let them know. Be kind."

We don't say a lot more, but sit together for another hour.


"Call Rob," I tell the machine in my car. I have just left work and push the button in my car to call my husband like I always do--to let him know I am on my way home.

I am on my way. On my way and I have forgotten and then remembered.

Later, I join a few other women, all widows and more for aren't we all more than the boy who lost his father. I join the women in the late afternoon before the sky darkens and rain falls.  This is a grief group.

I have wandered a bit and found a place that almost feels like home or at least like home as I kind of remember it.


Nothing is complete. Nothing. 


  1. Words help to find a home inside your memories. Peace be with you and your son, Mary Ann.

  2. I love these words like a grieving sonata.
    I join the women
    In the afternoon
    Before the sky darkens
    And the rain falls.

    I also read this as:
    The sky darkens / rain falls
    Before the afternoon lightens /
    I join the women.
    This is a grief group.

    Thanks for your writing.

  3. I can't imagine holding so much of your own grief and trying to help your son navigate his own. So very, very hard.

    1. He is such a joy to me that focusing on him helps.


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