Greetings, I hope this summer brings you the calm, energy, and renewal that you may be seeking (I know I always am). As I often try to sit and remember the fine details and specifics of a life taken from my family way too soon, I’m reminded of the things we carry with us – whether literally/physically; emotionally/psychologically; spiritually or any other way.

Those who have lived with grief for a while, know it never goes away, you will always carry your loved one through life with you, in some way. It could be the signs we seek out; it may also be trauma/healing that we’re still dealing with or it could be something as simple as an article/essay that you’ve kept with you and read from time to time (copy attached to my message) – which in my case happened to be written a month before my daughter Samantha passed away in 2009 – and was given to me by a mentor a month after she passed away together with words of comfort/encouragement.

I have carried it all of these years because it tells of possibilities; of hope/promise; also, of the pressure created by loss; and most significantly of the influence and mark our loved ones have made on our lives, in some lasting way, shape or form. For me personally, I also hoped that my (then infant) son and then his brother would be able to understand this one day and feel Sammi’s influence and legacy (like his brother did in the essay). I’m hopeful that the things we have chosen to carry with us have left my children able to find endless joy in life while still being able to carry their sister with them and keep her close.

At COPE, our hope is that we can help families living with the loss of a child or sibling connect and learn to navigate their grief to allow for healing. And to be able to live purposefully with the things we carry.

I invite each of you to help us do the same.

Much love, Larry

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