When I first saw this picture of my wife Erica’s beautiful green eyes, I was totally captured. I wanted to gaze deeper into them and discover who she was. They grabbed me. They still do.
It’s quite amazing the things we take for granted about a person who is no longer physically present in our lives. When my first wife, Pam, closed her eyes for the last time, I cried. For almost 25 years, I had had the privilege of looking into those clear, blue eyes, but that was never to happen again. Continue reading →
My mother-in-law died this week. She was the mother of my first wife, Pam, who died almost 10 years ago now.
I’m feeling for Dad especially right now, her husband, as I recall my own grief following the death of my first wife. I remember how hard it was for me to even think about a life without Pam. I’m sure it will be hard for Dad too. Continue reading →
I love all four of my children very much – but the one that changed my life forever was the birth of my first son, Devon.
I will never forget holding Devon in my arms for the first time. His mom had to have a C-section and so following the surgery, they gave Devon to me to hold. Continue reading →
Dying is hard because of relationships.
Some saying dying is hard because of physical suffering. While I have not personally experienced physical suffering in dying, I have experienced the inner angst that comes from the inevitability of no longer being in relationship with someone whom you love deeply. Continue reading →
Bringing Your Loved One Into the Celebration
This month, I returned to parish ministry following a 4-year sabbatical. One of the individuals who encouraged and supported me to be a pastor when I was young was my first wife Pam who died 9 years ago.
There are many celebrations in life where we wish we could bring back a deceased loved one.
Do you ever find yourself in the middle of a celebration missing that person? Continue reading →
I had my second wart (since my 58 years of life) on the outside of my left pinkie toe and it slowed me down – a lot!
Today, when I tried to charge through the mall to complete my chores, I couldn’t because the wart was rubbing against the inside of my shoe. It hurt! But it forced me to walk at a normal pace. To my surprise, at the slower speed, I actually began to notice and enjoy everything around me. I really did.
Oh, how we need to live life differently and more intentionally.
It’s the same with grief. Some people believe you should plough through it as fast as possible and get to the “other side”. I personally don’t believe that’s possible or healthy – grief has a purpose that requires us to slow down.
Because, when you rush…
- You make mistakes
- You miss out on what is right in front of you that might be important
- You create anxiety in and around you
- You don’t give space for the learning
- You don’t see what is good
- You can’t reframe because you are focussed on one thing only
Better to be the tortoise than the hare. No need to rush – your grief isn’t going anywhere soon.
My Dad was dying with a terminal illness. My wife had been diagnosed with third-stage ovarian cancer. I felt stretched trying to take care of my wife and spend time with my Dad, who was in his final days on earth. Continue reading →
The bartender was new to his job in Canada. He was from Italy and spoke limited English. I found that out by asking him a few questions. Really nice guy. He was doing his best to learn the ins and outs of being a bartender. He was in training. Continue reading →
Why wouldn’t you thank God for that?
One of the most endearing pictures I have of my first wife is of her sitting on the toilet as a little girl. Seeing it again reminded me how much I miss Pam. We all do. It’s coming up for her ninth year in heaven, when she died at age 47. Continue reading →
Mother’s Day is an acute reminder of what we still miss when Mom is no longer alive on this earth. We celebrate – but it’s bittersweet. Joy mixed with sadness.
Strong memories capture our hearts and minds as we think about the love we shared. On a day when many gather as families, we also find ourselves shedding some tears as we miss her. It’s important to remember and bring Mom closer. Continue reading →
He looked to be about 50 years of age. A farmer. As I sat down next to him, he immediately told me that this was his very first time on an airplane. I must confess I looked to see if there was a puke bag in the seat pocket in front of him….just in case. “So how are you feeling?” I asked him. “Good,” he answered. “Excited!” he continued. I smiled. I hoped it would turn out well for him – and for me – and for the young girl in the window seat next to him whom he had also informed about his first flight adventure. Continue reading →