There are five people in our family. Each one unique. Each one with his or her place.
But when we were all together Jonathan almost invariably set the tone. He was at times the ringleader and other times the ring master. His personality was too big to ignore. If he was in a playful mood, the room became playful. If he was in a combative mood, the room became combative. And in those rare times when he was in a tender mood, the room became tender.
Pam and I believe with all our hearts that Jonathan is joyful and with the Lord, and accept fully that God's plan is better than the one we would have wanted for our boy. But honestly, at this moment that does little to lessen the pain.
Mary Jo Bang is professor of English and director of the Creative Writing Program at Washington University. Her fifth book, "Elegy," which won of the National Book Critics Circle Award, examines the pain and grief following the death of her son. She shares two poems from the collection.
Listen to Mary Jo Bang read from and discuss Elegy in this Poetry foundation interview:
I lost my brother Nick to the disease of addiction in May 2010. This song was written in response to the 'My Last Photo' initiative begun by Gary Mendell and colleagues at Shatterproof. You can read more about it here: www.shatterproof.org/mylastphoto
Only another grieving mother can truly understand the overwhelming sorrow that the loss of a child brings. ForMomsOnly is a healing place where you will find other mothers who can help you on this difficult journey
Tell me about your favorite Natasha memory,” after you’ve updated me on your child’s latest milestone. (I might hesitate and stumble; I might not come up with a very revelatory memory. I might even cry, but I will so appreciate you acknowledging my child’s life.)
Honestly, I am not sure how to describe myself since my youngest, beautiful, healthy, vibrant, precious daughter died suddenly on August 4, 2013 because I no longer know who I am behind this grief fog. However, I am absolutely positive about one thing, and that is I have changed.
Across America, officials are raising the alarm on a public health plague: Heroin abuse. Philip Seymour Hoffman’s tragic death recently brought national awareness to the problem of heroin-related overdoses and deaths.
NBC News wants to tell the stories of people who have been most intimately impacted by heroin—users and their loved ones. Have you or a family member ever battled a heroin problem, now or in the past? We want to hear from you. Submit your story via email by clicking on this address. (Savannah.Sellers@nbcuni.com)
I am a Christian who has been beaten and scarred by the ongoing spiritual battle after the loss of my son, Brandon, to suicide. ....He was gone….and all 29 years of my prayers and nurturing did little good. In the end, it did not save him from himself. My struggles are with the obvious whys of it all and devastating sorrow….the complicated grief that trails me like a shadow.
My husband, Phil, and I have two children, Philip and Natalie, who are (of course) the great loves of our lives. On February 23rd, 2012, we found out that our son, who had turned 21 the month before, died. It was sudden and unexpected....The essential question, the one that seems without the answer I’m so desperate to find, is, “How do I live in the face of death? How do I make meaning in the aftermath of the unthinkable?”
On This show Dr. Gloria Horsley and Dr. Heidi Horsley discuss with Fred Luskin Ph.D. the rationale for forgiveness and why forgiveness is necessary. Radha Stern author and victims advocate will join Dr. Luskin to discuss how she deals with forgiveness when the man who murdered her son shows no remorse