A few weeks ago I was thinking about how I was going to keep myself busy for the next few months as my family and I head into the first anniversary of my oldest son’s suicide. I knew it was going to be very difficult as well as an emotional roller coaster. I was not wrong. Yesterday was Ash Wednesday and I began to fall apart. But my plan to stay busy with something was a good one because… Read more

I am twelve days away from going through hell. It will be one year since my Tia Mary died on February 3rd which starts off the death anniversaries. First Tia, then Anthony on March 8th, then I turn 41 (its own hell which my body announced last night when I had to get up three time to pee) and finally, two years since the death of my Tio Roy on April 18th.  Last year that anniversary was gonna be difficult… Read more

On Wednesday March 8th at 1:51 my oldest son called me to ask if he could use my car to go to the parish. When he asked me how long I would be, I thought he was just being impatient, I had no idea that we got off the phone he would walk into our garage and hang himself. It would be the last time that I heard him say “I love you mom”. The fact that he made that… Read more

  Reviewing this book is a bit difficult because I am pretty bias. I love Colleen Mitchell so very much. She is one of the many people who were rays of God’s love in my life shortly after the suicide of my oldest son while I was at a writing conference at Notre Dame this summer. One of the things that probably seemed like no big deal to her but was to me was the morning she gave me a… Read more

  If you are like me, this short Advent doesn’t seem like it is enough time. I don’t really know what I need more time for but I just feel like I need it. This is a very short Advent so I have already failed at most of it. I have done a great job at staying out of the busyness of secular Christmas with all the hustle and bustle that makes it difficult to be Catholic during Advent while everyone… Read more

Mourning is something that is avoided at every cost. Part of it is our brain protecting us from feeling the total loss of someone we love or even something we lost. But part of it is also our culture. In America 2017 the idol of positive vibes and positive thinking is worshiped at every level. We do not want to suffer and we do not want to witness suffering. We turn a blind eye to it, justify it, or just… Read more

When I walked around the cemetery in Rome and came across this headstone I thought about the kind of love and grief that would inspire a man to have it made for his wife’s grave. I never imagined that seven years later I would understand that kind of love and grief on such a personal level as I do now. Today is All Souls Day, a day that I have used to show how Catholic I am for the last… Read more

I have had a lot of people tell me that my faith in the aftermath of my son’s suicide inspires them. When people tell me that I always assume I must be putting on some kind of image of myself that is not true because I do not feel like I have strong faith at all. I have doubted everything I came to believe in the last eight years of being Catholic since the day that I buried my son…. Read more

I never sold or did drugs but I dated drug dealers. I hung out in bootleg bars and played craps with drug dealers and drug addicts. My first husband was a crack addict. I got pregnant at 16 years old by a man who was 21. That is statutory rape, which I didn’t even consider until I was in my 30’s. But more than anything, I have been the nice little kid turned hard because that is the only way… Read more

  I was asked to review Eight Whopping Lies by Brian Doyle and I knew nothing about him. I just cracked open the book on my Kindle app one night and started reading it. I was amazed. It is amazing writing that makes you feel connected to the writer as a Catholic even when you don’t agree with what he is saying or even have the memories that he has about growing up Catholic. The essays are each amazing in… Read more

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