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December 23, 2012 12:00 AM

Parental grief and the dreaded first holiday

Many families in our neighborhoods are suffering through their first holiday season without a loved one. Four years ago, I had my first dreadful holiday without my son, Mikey. He ended his own life on the Nov. 10, 2008, after suffering a delusional episode. I’ve spoken to dozens of suffering families while bringing Mikey’s story to the community. I see the anguished eyes of other grieving parents, beseeching me to give them some magic words that will somehow lighten their sorrow. In me, they see another parent who has lost a beloved child, and wonder how I still manage to laugh and smile and speak of my son’s death without choking back sobs.

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