Coping Skills

Am I to Blame?- the 2nd in a series on how grief interacts with our brain –

The blame game, we all play it. Come on, admit it, you see a victim on TV, their car is washed away in a flash flood and the first thing you think is, “Why did they drive into a creek?” Or we hear about a shooting fatality and think, “What were they doing out so late, anyway?” If we find fault then we somehow feel safer. It’s an illusion.

I could easily blame the person who...


Be the Dad

Father’s Day is not unlike a lot of holidays. I wake up no different. Yea I’m a Dad, it’s who I am and what I do, but my little family gets to say “But you’re our Dad.” On my birthday I think no woop, I was born, a year latter and I didn’t die, but thanks for noticing. And my family gets to say, “Thanks for sticking around.” On Veteran’s Day I think, I served, I...


Living With Hope and Grief

After my son died, I simply did not know what to do, what to say, where to go, or how to do it. We often say, “It left me speechless, I just don’t know what to say,” yet we then go on and on describing the sensation. In this case, I truly did not have the words, I didn’t know what to do, I was absolutely lost. Gone was my voice, my inner voice, in a swirl of...


How a Moment In Time Can Add Up to Lifetime of Memories

I milled about, hoping to see someone I knew, hoping someone would know me.
“2015?” I asked.

“Yea, I’m Backdraft.”

“I’m Andy, uh Phantom,” I replied.


And I was back in the community that enveloped me four years ago as I walked from Georgia to Maine. We were at Trail Days in Damascus Va, the granddaddy of Appalachian Trail hikers. We stood awkwardly, made weak conversation then, “Hey I know you.”



Let Go? What it means–What It Doesn’t Mean

Letting go. Simple enough. Just let go. But not easy enough. Letting go means letting go of the control. It doesn’t mean letting go of the memory. Memories are distorted as the need for control increases. Because the need for control makes us see things through our self-meter. We see things the way we want to see them and not how they really are.

And control? What’s that all about? Hasn’t death shown us that control is...


Surviving the High Dive

The sun shines, the breeze breezes and the temperature temps. But the keyboard calls so I sit at the picture window watching life in 3-D. Happy behind glass, it’s National Sibling Day. I know because I was on "the book." Seems Facebook has replaced the other book we used to call “The Book.” We have a national day for just about everything from hemorrhoids to hotdogs. I’m thinking we need a National Everything Else Day...