my heart goes out to you …What a horrible loss. I am so sad. I am sorry for this terrible loss. My tears mingle with yours…we are not wired to lose a child.

In the hours and days, weeks and years following our own tragic loss, these words came to replay as a constant in my understanding of my own grief and tears. I deeply believe this, that as humans, we are not wired for the shock and loss of losing a child. These words came from a dear healing friend who shared our love and pain, our joy and sorrow connected as one well of understanding.

I believe that I do not want to be part of a world which is not shocked and changed by these experiences. For me, there was always the illusion that you can protect your children and loved ones.  That must be what gives you the leap of faith to take
the chance to love another that much – the illusion that you can keep
them safe because your world would shatter if you could not…

In the years since, there is no getting over. There is no going back. But one foot in front of the other, we hold close to our love and come to know our grief as a lifelong companion, who will walk with us, inform us, and we will see life through an altered lens, a universal filter and companion. 

The visual companion to these words was my image of a jagged hole torn as though a monolith had been blasted through. Working with stone at the time, I began to see it would only be less sharp as time and understanding sanded the edges.

As wind and rain enlarge the gaping hole, the edges change, making the hole even larger, worn by familiarity, burnished by our touch.