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“When I was about 9 or 10, I had my first major loss: my grandmother. No other person has used the words, I love you, in a more perfect way. Her energy, her aura made a person believe they could do anything. Two years later, my aunt was lost. Then there was my greatest loss: my father died when I was 18. It was something akin to watching a train charge through a tunnel, except that when a train charges through the tunnel, it comes out the other end. This time, the train just didn’t make it.

Yes, family is a support system, but everyone is hurting. Everyone is trying to find their way back to a reality they never wanted. There is loss of that person’s essence, like the smell from the clothes they wore. Slowly, these things start vanishing. It’s not until these life prints are gone that a person is truly no longer with us.

Why cope? We cope because we need to live. I coped by refusing to allow myself to be lost. I cope because no matter the length of time that passes, I was there before these losses were.”


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