Watercolor painting full of colorful, abstract impressions (red, green, blue, yellow, orange, pink) painted by a young child, My Forever Son. Watecolors suggest the brightness and hope of a young child.
A Decade of Grief: How Grief Colors My World, My Forever Son


For Here Now, I Stay,

Breathing Love You Gave,

My Ache Cradling You Always

My Forever Son

Memories of You

I remember sitting with you at the kitchen table, pouring over cookie recipe books, asking “Does this sound good? Just listen” And we would make a list, a long list, of cookies to bake.

Sugar cookies, Molasses Crinkles, Snickerdoodles, Candy Cane cookies, Blondies, Chocolate Fudge—and oh how that list would go on.

We would tackle them all, he and I, spend snowy afternoons baking, stirring sweet batter, measuring love in teaspoons. 

Oh the memories—Oh the ache.

My Forever Son

A decade of grief

Walking through hell on earth without you. There is an ache, a sadness, the heaviness of accepting this absence of you that, just for today, has taken the overture of 10 years in the making. In three weeks, my birthday, remarkable in that I have survived these last 10 years without you. In the beginning, I didn’t think I could.


I lost my identity when you died, and in so many ways, I’m still losing you. And with the sweep of my birthday? Yet more losing, slipping away, forward, forward, the spinning incessant, the days numbered and yet not knowing when time will mark forever stamped with the permanence of death. I hate that I think like this, but Dylan, kiddo, you died and changed everything about my life.


I miss you more than words can write, more than heart can rend, and still, even after 10 years, I most want to be with you. Lacking your permanence, I falter in my own. It is difficult to finish anything of consequence, for always I’m left feeling I’ve an unfinished life. Chapters, pages, story line, plot, the rise and then fall, denouement, all of it missing in a way that I will not ever make sense of this life again.

I do not like living in a book unfinished, and yet I am unfinished, an anguished truth where some days seem impossible. Your birthday looms, then Mother’s Day, then your Memorial Date, then back-to-school and all those seasons I find so difficult to move through: Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year’s Eve. I forever miss the you that is me, and I forever miss the me that died with you.

Lost without you

Were you?

Are you?

Where are you?


A decade of tears

Ache. Pain. Gaining traction these past 10 years, eroding bits and pieces of me in ways that I can both feel and see. Damage done beyond my means, I have found a way to go on, though so often feel I am living out someone else’s life.

I linger, but it is not I who is doing the living. She who I’ve built these past 10 years stands in my place. Such is my life now and sometimes? Sometimes I am genuinely happy. Sometimes, which is good enough for now. Let me stay in the soliloquy here, serenity in whiteness of snow, beauty in having made an exquisite Black Bean soup for supper. Hope finds me most when I practice being grateful for the small things of an ordinary day.

Here, just for now, I stay here now. I am grateful for this place, a pause after a chaotic several months of the rest of the world spinning out of control. My heart’s joy, my life’s light, the book of my life-I wish so much you had stayed to live past the chapters of pain. I wish I could have done more to help heal wounds that I bore (and still bear) too. I miss you so much my son.

So many days, so much time having passed and yet still as it has been still these past 10 years. Sometimes, it’s as though I am in some kind of fog, a fog, a thick, can’t-see-clear kind of  Where did you go, my child, where did you go?

Were you? Are you? Where are you?

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By Beth Brown

Rememberer of dreams. Whisperer of gardens green.
At the whim of "Most Beloved" and a hot cup of tea.
I live life between, straddled here now and then,
My continuity through writing--
Pen dripping ink, mind swirling confused,
Love lingering still, and Most Beloved's purring soothes.

Blogger at "Gardens at Effingham" (where cats do the talking) and "My Forever Son" (where a mother's heart runs deep after losing her son to suicide)
Musician. Writer. Literary Connoisseur.
At the whim of a calico cat and a strong cup of tea.

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