I recently attended another funeral for a young man. My heart was heavy as I approached his mother and family. I knew how they felt and could empathize with them but all I could say was "I am so sorry for you and your family." Family is so important to acknowledge because not just his mom lost a son. They all suffered a loss. And I thanked God for giving me the strength to be there for them. As I drove home realized I hadn't written on my blog in a while; that's not to say I haven't had a lot to share. But I let life get in the way. And that is a big step in healing from loss. It's the nights that are the hardest to get through. When I am alone in my thoughts and I let them wander off. I wish I had a key so I could lock the door of grief that I have gone through, and it would stay locked. But that is impossible. It never closes. A song comes on the radio and it brings me to tears and I feel like a baby crying because I really thought I was past the part of crying over Alex. And it finally dawns on me; I am NEVER going to get over losing Alex. I am entitled to cry and I shouldn't be so hard on myself for letting it come in as it does sometimes. At least it's now down to just "sometimes" because I can still recall when it was every day. I have learned so many of life's lessons in such a short period of time. Family always comes first. Live every day to it's fullest. Live, love, laugh AND dance like there is no tomorrow. I could go on and on but I'm sure you understand what I mean. These are only some of life's lessons. I still have days that sneak in and taking just another breathe seems impossible. I find it hard to think the day will come to an end and then there is tomorrow, and it's another day to get through. I feel the pain and it's excruciating. It weighs me down and I don't think I can even get out of bed. I don't want to. It's easier to stay there and pray that when I sleep I will dream of the days he was alive and with us. When he was fun to be with and we were a family of five. But I can't stay in bed. I have had so many moving, glorious moments when I am out and about in this world. Our family has had wonderful days in the past months with vacations and weddings and engagements. And friends, who have shared their lives with us, have also added to those days. Babies, God's little miracles, have come our way and we have been honored to share in the joy of their arrival. And yet I still cry with sadness and my heart actually hurts. My grief was at it's deepest the year after Alex died. If I can give anyone a little advice, this would be it. The first year after you lose a loved one, you are in shock. So yes, you do grieve. But the second year it sinks in. And the feeling of shock is deeper, which you think is impossible, but it was for me. I can only say that today I feel I have crawled through this with the help of friends and family and I am up and standing because of their love and support. So yes, I do thank God for family. I will continue to pray for families.