A place to share our stories, our children, our siblings (our loved ones), our grief and ways we have found to continue to heal and rebuild our lives.
Please share, we want to be a part of your journey!
|Posted on May 13, 2016 at 3:45 PM||comments (2)|
As we approach our two-year anniversary as an organization to help the bereaved, I can't help but look back with gratitude and joy for all we have touched and been able to help. I also look back and look at what a momentous task it has been to get to where we are today. Starting a nonprofit could be compared to pushing an elephant up hill. It has been hard, tiring and at times even discouraging, but when just one person shares with us on how we have helped them or even at times saved them from imminent destruction in the dark despair of griefs grip, once again I have the strength of one hundred bereaved parents and I know I am on the path that was meant to be the day my children lives were no longer.
It is an endless task of thinking when you are trying to push an elephant up hill. As the sweat beads up on your brow you think, there must be an easier way, there must be some way to get this beast up this hill without so much struggle. You try this lever and that pulley system, you try to have the elephants at the top help pull the one up that just won’t budge. No matter how hard you struggle or what tools you use the elephant only moves a centimeter at a time. You know one day you will get your elephant there, to the top, where there is fresh water and plenty to eat. But for now the elephant is hungry and thirsty and you have only a little of your own reserves to share.
You see, for as exhilarating and heartwarming it is to see the other elephants standing at the top, you know that this mega ton, that is personal to you, must continue to be heaved up the hill to provide so much to so many. I have always believed that if something in life is a struggle it is not meant to be, who ever said this has never started a nonprofit in service of humanity and healing of hearts.
You see what we offer no one wants. No one wants to lose a loved one, or cry over the grave of their child, no one wants to feel as if they will die under the heavy weight and despair of grief. You see we serve the people who belong to a club no one ever wants to join and many pretend doesn't exist. We serve the broken hearted whose lives have been ripped apart and left in shreds, we help these people learn to piece back together the shreds, it will never look the same, some shreds will be pasted in the wrong place or maybe upside down, it all might look at bit catawampus when finished, but it is a life non the less.
These beautiful souls did not give up, they did not veer from the path when the work became unbearable, the stayed steadfast and believed us that once more they will have a whole life. At first, once gluing all the shreds of the shattered life back together, not only was it a mess, it also was colorless and void of feeling, this life, although whole, was not a life anyone would want to live. However, those that live it are not left a choice, well they do have a choice actually, to live this new life or not, and the "not" happens more than most would care to know. There are those who have entered this club that believe not only can they not glue the shreds back together but there are no shreds left at all.
I know these people, for at times I am still one of them, at times the burden it too big, the pain is too deep and excruciating and I will stop by the side of the road on my journey, out of breath and weak, hungry and dying of thirst, a thirst that can never again be quenched on this earth. It is during these times, when I am so weak and so tiered that I begin to see the mirage. The mirage of the life I once had, the one with children and a family, the one with love and joy. Every ounce of my being wants to go to the mirage, but I know innately that it isn't really what it appears to be, it isn't a way of stopping the pain, it is only a way of inducing others pain.
Once I have seen the mirage then I know it is time to rest and practice H.E.R.E self-care. Hydrate, Eat, Rest and Exercise (or in my case… get out of my house). For it is only through being HERE in this moment and at our strongest that we can continue this journey we loath. The future to us is no more, what we believed and imagined it would be no longer exists. The nonexistence brings fear of what the future holds now, will the color return, will any feeling at all besides fear, anger and sadness ever exist again? The past is full wonderful memories, but that’s all that is left of our loved ones here in this place. The knowing that the memories will not continue to be created is painful, so best not to look into the past until we can with joy.
Once I am rested I continue the journey, until I can't again, and then again it is time to rest. We always wonder why those who are not in this club can't see it, why can't they see our weary souls and shattered lives? They can't see it because they have not joined the club, and we hope they never do, but we so need their support and understanding, we need their help, but they cannot see what only we can see and feel.
So, as I continue to push my elephant up the hill, I must remember how far it has come and I must have the steadfast belief that we will reach the summit someday. Someday our resources will be abundant to help the masses, someday the color will return so brightly it can be shared with those still in the dark. Someday me and my elephant will relax, and smile as we float down a lazy river together wrapped in the love we selflessly shared with those who had none, surrounded by the sounds of hope that sings so beautifully, for all the hope our journey gave to others no matter how hard. We made it, we made it to the top and we may now rest, we can rest and be assured that our elephant was needed by many, for you see our elephant held wisdom, wisdom of all the bereaved before and together all of our elephants will heal the world of the taboo of death, together they will allow those who once could not see, to see, and those who see us will comfort us and be honored to help and hold our weary souls. As I use the elephant as a metaphor of our organization and the past two years, it is synonymous of our grief as well and the momentous task that lies before each and every one of us that entered through those doors, not by choice, but we are here and together we hold the strength of all the bereaved families who came before, together we can move an entire heard of elephants. Those who cannot see us yet, or those who can't seem to look in our direction because it hurts. please, please try, try and see, reach out, lend us a hand, bring us more reserves on our journey for there is never enough. We need your help as well to push our elephants up to the tippy tippy top of the hill of hope.
Cheers to year three!!!
|Posted on October 9, 2015 at 4:00 PM||comments (1)|
We are working hard in preparation of our next event to honor our children and raise funds for CFMNM and most importantly get our name out to more people that need us and our services. It has been bitter sweet working with the Brother of Phi Delta Musicus in Honor of their Fallen Brother and My Son Logan "Xtreme Mills. These young people were cut from the same special cloth as my son and give of their heart and talents with such enthusiasm. Over the years they have been there for me to hold a Halloween extravaganza the first year after Logan and Amanda died, it was easier that facing Halloween with nothing planned because it was Logan's favorite holiday. They have also kept in touch and let me know they are there for me and honor and Miss Logan daily. It means so much to me. The Family from Carrolton that is helping me the Simpson's in honor of their Brother and Son Cacy Simpson could not be sweeter if they were make of caramel or maybe they actually are made of some sugary substance. I will lick Cody on the check when I see him and post back. He is a Kook like that and will think it is funny. Then we have my most special BIG (Brother in Grief) who has brought so much to my life and our organization I could never begin to go into it all. His name is Ron Kelly and he will be selling his books at the info table the day of the event in front of the court house and will personally sign them for you. He lost his 16 year old some Jonathan to a heart defect he was born with. Jon Jon died less than 2 years ago but Ron is led like many bereaved parents to keep their children’s legacy alive through good works in the community and especially for other parents on this journey. He is a special man and he is driving down from the Memphis area to join us for the day. Organizing the event is fun, stressful, touching but also a little sad because each action to touch others’ lives I remember this gift my two beautiful babies left me of service to other bereaved parents and how I would not be here doing what I do with so many wonderful people had my children not crossed over after a horrific auto accident 1/20/2011. Seems like yesterday and years ago. Time stands still often as a bereaved parent! I am so looking forward to seeing all the "Brothers" who love Logan and other very special people to me who walk this path with me! If I am fortunate I will meet other angel parents who will be directed by their children to our event and our organization. Who would have known that sorrow and joy could live in the heart simultaneously?
I hope to see in you Carrolton Oct 17th in front of the Court House! Come one Come all!
|Posted on July 9, 2015 at 3:30 PM||comments (0)|
This article was sent to us by a professional blogger who works for one of our supporters in the Head Stone- Memorial industry. Some of these things I don't even remember doing when my children died but someone had to have. Somethings are not relative to young children such as wills or identity theft. But this is very fitting for adult loved ones and some of the last things you would think of at the time of their death. Possibly discuss these topics here with your entire family so everyone knows what must be done at the time of any of the family members death. Make sure all adult family members have a legal will and even disucuss with older children their wishes if they should die. My children were 21 and 25 and died together as most of you know. I did not have a clue what they would have wanted done in regards to a funeral, their remains, their belongings, etc. Alot of these decisions I made simply because I felt I was lead to make them. Months after I would be told by friends and family that both had discussed what they would want should they die while they were alive and what decisions I did make, is what they wanted. I was relieved, but it would have been nice to know at the time what they would have wanted. The subject of death is so taboo in our society people dont often speak of it openly, however I believe the grief journey would be a little less painful if people did. I hope you enjoy this guest blog article and please feel free to send us articles you have written for concideration to be posted on our blog.
The Five Most Important Things To Do After Losing A Loved One
Even when death is expected, it’s always still difficult to deal with. But although it might seem overwhelming at first, being prepared can make this hard process a whole lot easier. Here are the five most important things to do to make your loved one’s passing as smooth as possible.
1. Notify Authorities, Family And Friends
While letting family and friends know that a loved one has died should be a top priority, notifying the authorities is just as important. Most hospitals and hospices will contact the coroner’s office to officially declare death and transport the remains, but many other organizations will need to be communicated with personally. Employers, insurance companies, and financial institutions should be notified immediately in order to receive benefits and avoid identity theft. If the deceased was receiving government benefits, Social Security and Medicare need to be cancelled right away to avoid repayment charges later on.
2. Talk To A Lawyer
Even if you don’t plan on hiring one, it’s still a good idea to contact a lawyer and ask any questions you might have regarding the deceased’s will. This is especially important for executors of wills, considering they are financially liable for properly distributing the deceased’s possessions. All possible beneficiaries of the will should be aware of their status. Legal advice is also a good way of protecting your loved one from identity theft. Identity theft is especially common among the recently deceased, and you can help protect them by notifying their legal and financial agencies, keeping personal details in their obituary to a minimum, and registering them for the Direct Marketing Association’s Deceased Do Not Contact List.
3. Gather Important Documents
Get 10-20 copies of the death certificate as soon as you can. Most important agencies won’t even discuss your loved one’s financial affairs without proof of death. Besides a death certificate, it will also be important to secure any insurance policies, investment accounts, tax returns from the last two years, and final banking and mortgage statements. Documents like these will be repeatedly requested while final financial affairs are being settled, and should be organized before beginning to execute the will.
4. Consider Organ Donation
If the deceased was a registered organ donor, their remains could go on to save the life of somebody else. Ideally, you will know your loved one’s wishes regarding organ donation before death, and will be able to take immediate steps to ensure that they are fulfilled. If you or a loved one would like to be an organ donor, registration is a quick and simple process.
5. Celebrate Life
Give yourself the freedom to grieve and plan a proper funeral. Grieving for a lost loved one will be a different process for everyone, but no matter which ways we choose to grieve, support is best found within a community. Take the time to share your feelings with family and friends, or with grief counselor if it seems appropriate. Say goodbye in a way that will be meaningful to both the living and the dead. Fulfilling any last wishes will not only honor memories, but also help those leftover move on.
Jessica Kane is a professional blogger who writes for Legacy Headstones http://legacyheadstones.com/ a leading ohio-based headstone manufacturer and vendor.
|Posted on June 30, 2015 at 6:30 AM||comments (0)|
It has only been one short year since the conception of Cry For Me...No More. We have touched 40 + family members face-to-face in our transformational "Healing the Family" workshops. We have been so fotunate to have been contacted by some amazing orginizations asking us to share CFMNM with them through lectures, conferences, newspaper interviews, Radio etc. It has been a whirl wind of a year.
As I sit here a year and 12 days since we were incorporated, so much has transpired and many things have yet to transpire as we had hoped. I remind myself that our work has a definite ripple effect and even though we are at a place where the future is unknown, when is it ever truley not, I take a deep breath and I relax into the reality of the thousands of people we have touched through the differnt channels of communication we use. I know deep in my soul that the work we do is vital for many and it is a true gift to those in dipear. I know it is sacred work passed down from the devine and although we find ourselves in need of rescources as we move forward to touch more people, we by no means are in the the great need experienced by the people we serve.
I smile when I thiink of my children and how they must be so proud of the work we are doing, I hear and see them cheering us on in my mind and feel them in my heart! Today I relax into faith and knowing that the future will transpire as it does and our intentions are pure and from the heart and soul. No mountain was built in a day and many great people who fought for a cause to heal humanity always faced adversity and uncertainty. These people we see as heros today never faultered and always knew their cause was bigger than them, it was soul work, it was loving work to bring people together, to bring people safety and healing in many ways.
We are heros by no means, but our desire to touch peoples lives and make a difference is real. We are beyond blessed through this last year and I look forward to the adventure to come. Will things look different than the original vision, more than likely, but change means growth and through growth we find more knowing and truth.
There are so many poeple to thank for this last year that without their support we would not be where we are today! I think you know who you are!
Please parents, sisters, brother, everyone who has great love in their heart for a loved one gone to soon, please join us for another exciting year. Help us spread the word of who we are and what we do. If you don't know e mail or call we would be happy to share. But you can find a great deal about us on this website. Share our story and yours with the world, for it is together we will make the greatest difference!
|Posted on November 15, 2014 at 7:25 AM||comments (0)|
It’s been almost four years now, another holiday season rolls around. The forth Thanksgiving without you is soon. It’s just a stupid day, a day where people eat Turkey and watch football why should I care?
There is no one to visit me this year; there is no one here who cares. The numbness is creeping in. The pain so deep, I can’t breathe, I can’t think, I can’t stand it. All day long I think of you, but why? Why is today any different than any other day?
Is it holiday traditions lost? Is it knowing millions of parents everywhere will be with their children this week but I won’t be with you? Is it remembering the closeness and laughter on this day throughout the years? Why do the tears fill my eyes and my heart hurt so?
Maybe somewhere deep down inside I am asking myself what am I thankful for and this question is so very hard since you are gone. When someone first told me to be thankful for the years I spent with you, or to be thankful I had you in my life, I wanted to punch them and scream leave me alone you don’t understand!
But now I understand because I am eternally grateful for those years. Today almost four years since you left this place, my fourth Thanksgiving without you here I am thankful for all the love we shared. I am thankful for the gift of Motherhood you each gave me, the greatest gift of all.
On the good days now, which four years since you left this place, there are more good days then not, but on the good days, I can’t begin to count how many things I am thankful for. But if I had to pick just one thing on Thanksgiving as I say my prayers, I would have to say I am most grateful for each day I spend with both of you tucked safely in my heart!
|Posted on October 9, 2014 at 7:55 AM||comments (0)|
7 days until our first Georgia workshop!! This time next week our facilitators will be flying in from destinations around the US. We will be in full speed ahead mode getting ready to make a difference in people’s lives. That's why we do what we do...a passion to make a difference and to heal!
We still have spots open to register for the workshop. PLEASE REGISTER NOW, you can register on our website under register for workshop!
Do something healing for yourself and your family, you deserve it!
It is going to be a beautiful weekend in North GA, October is just magnificent in that part of the country! The site where we are holding the workshop is a beautiful property and just the atmosphere is healing!
We would love to have the workshop full to capacity, so ask yourself "what is stopping me from going"? If you can’t find a good reason, or even if you can, work around it and register today! You will be so glad you did!
We hope to see you there!!!!
|Posted on September 25, 2014 at 9:40 AM||comments (0)|
We are getting really excited about our event on the Gainesville GA Square this weekend (Sept 27 from 2-6) There is so much going on it is hard to name it all. Lots of fun things for kids, Pizza by the slice, shaved Ice, baked goods, Karokoe, a silent auction...its going to be a big day! We are running like crazy trying to get it all together. Please come out and join us for the fun and learn more about us and other grief orginizationa that will be present to share resources with the community.
|Posted on September 18, 2014 at 7:50 AM||comments (0)|
We are within a month of our first workshop in Georgia and it is such an exciting time! We have our first fundraiser in Gainesville GA on the historic square in a little over a week. Come out and join us for a celebration of life Sept 27th on the square for 2-6.
Time has certainly flown by. We still have spots open for families to register for our workshop free of charge. It is a 2 1/2 day workshop to be held in Taccoa GA from Oct 17 at 5:00 pm- Sun Oct 19th at 4pm. All lodging, meals and workshop fees are covered. We would love to fill this workshop to capacity; we can accommodate 20 family members at each workshop. We still have a few staffing positions open as well. Staffing requirements are to have a desire to help grieving parents heal, be willing to hold and safe and loving space for these families, bereaved parents are welcome who are over 5 years out in their grief journey/have been attending regular support groups or therapy and feel healthy enough to help others.
We are overjoyed to be having some wonderful facilitators flying in from all over the country that have been handpicked by our head facilitator, we also will have Mitch Carmody joining us on staff who is extremely treasured in the grief community for his wisdom and ability to teach proactive grieving from a place of love and compassion. We have to turn in a final head count to the conference center Sept 29th, so please register today for the workshop, you owe it to yourself and your family and you will be very glad you did.
In love and light,
|Posted on September 15, 2014 at 6:15 AM||comments (0)|
Yesterday my husband and I attended a local 5K put on by a pregnancy and infant grief group. We were not runners we just went to help, seeing the 150 or so family members that were there to honor their angel babies was so touching. The pink and blue balloon release was beautiful and the memory walk was surreal. Even though my children were much older when they died, I participated in the memory walk carrying them in my heart. I always find being a part of a celebration of a child’s life, no matter the age is very healing for me. I am always so grateful that these children have not been forgotten and amazed by the imprint they had on people’s lives. Honoring our children’s lives is so important in our grief journey and we all do it in different ways from memory gardens, to areas where we keep their pictures and keep sakes (some call shrines...I know because I have one), to larger events such as 5k's and memory walks, memorials, park benches and much more, but each one helps us to heal our hearts if just a tiny bit and gives us a place to express the love that did not die when our child did. What are some of the ways you honor your children?
Have a beautiful blessed day and we would love to hear from you!
In love and light,
|Posted on August 25, 2014 at 12:55 AM||comments (0)|
I have been missing your very much this weekend my sweethearts. Somedays I can feel you as you were right here, other days you seem so far away. How can it be almost 4 years since you left this world but it seems like just yesturday you stood infront of me and I was in yur presence? God what I would do to have you here!!! Or visit you there! I so love when I dream about you, but it is not very often. Sometimes when you come to my dreams you are on my mind when I wake and I know you were there but I can't remember our time together in the dream. The dreams are usually something about you are not really dead, that you were only faking or pretending for one reason or another. Once it was because you had both been in jail and you know I would have been so mad if that were the case that you faked your own deaths. Most of the time in the dreams I am telling you that you are dead and you dont understand or look at me like I am crazy (a familiar look when you were here ). Somedays I dont know how I will make it how many ever years I have to wait until I see you again. But I know I am needed here and there is still great purpose for us all. Work to be done here that I know you are a part of, there are so many people who need "our" help. If you meet the children or sister's or brother's of those people who need us please have them send their family to find us! You know back when I had cancer I prayed for God to let me live to see you become adults; but how could I have known that was all I was going to get to expereince, for once Logan because a legal adult you both had to go. Ironic huh? I know it will only be a blink of an eye before we are together again and today I have to stay strong for Armaya, all those that love me and all those we are still going to touch and help heal. Kisses to you Amanda and Logan. Psychic hugs and so much love being sent your way! I hope your days are filled with joy,sereanity and perfect health! I hope the glory of where you are keeps you from missing us too much
I love you so very very much!