The following is a children’s story written by my daughter Sarah, who lost her mother and two year old sister twenty-one years ago. This story appears in my copyrighted book, Love Never Dies: Embracing Grief With Hope and Promise (Xulon Press, 2011) available at http://grief-works.org/book.php and online at Amazon and Barnes & Noble.
Today my daughter Sarah is 30 years old, volunteers as a grief group facilitator with children at GriefWorks in Dallas Texas, and is working on her Masters in Counseling. This story written from her perspective as a child of nine who lost her mother and sister explains her personal grief journey for other children and their parents to hear and understand.
DEATH IS A VERY, VERY LONG TIME, BUT NOT FOREVER
My name is Sarah and this is my family.
Something really bad happened to my family.
My family was in a car crash, and my mommy and my baby sister died.
Everyone says that they are up in heaven now with God.
Daddy says that death is a very, very long time, but not forever.
My family is very sad and we miss them very much.
Lots of people come and do things for our family, like bring us food.
My aunt even comes to stay with us for a while.
Lots of grown-ups say that they are sorry, but I don’t know what for.
Lots of times I cry, because I miss them; and that’s okay.
Sometimes I don’t cry, and that’s okay too.
Sometimes I feel like it’s my fault.
Sometimes I’m mad at other people, like it’s their fault.
Sometimes I wish my mommy and my sister were still with me, and sometimes I wish I was up in heaven with them.
I ask God why, because I don’t understand why they’re gone.
Daddy says nobody, but God knows why.
I go to a group with a lot of kids like me who are sad, because they miss someone who died.
The grown-ups there ask a lot of questions.
Sometimes I can talk about what happened, and that’s okay
Sometimes my heart hurts too much to talk, and that’s okay too.
Sometimes my friends ask me questions…sometimes people ask about my mommy, because they don’t know…sometimes people ask if I have a sister…sometimes I don’t know what to say to them.
Sometimes seeing other people’s mommies and sisters makes me sad.
Sometimes it doesn’t.
Sometimes I forget that they are gone, and it hurts when I remember.
Sometimes when I’m dreaming, I see my mommy and my sister, and I am so happy, but then my heart hurts when I wake up.
I will never stop missing my mommy and my sister, but I am starting to be less sad.
Death is a very, very long time, but not forever.
Love you lots,