L is for Long, Loss, Love, Link and Life

I was originally going to use Long for my word and then I thought of Loss, Love, and Link.  Deciding to use them all around a central idea below is my musing on the long loss of love and the link to life.


I wasn’t always the best mother to you.  I know that and I am sorry.” I said late that night in early May.  “I am so very proud of you. I love you and long for you to find the life you want.”  With tears in my eyes hidden by my downward glance I spoke strong yet gently to my 21 year old son.  His response of forgiveness, strength, and determination made my heart leap with joy.

Our lives had not always been easy.  I was a single mom for his first 18 months, then marriage to his father for 18 months, a stint of single motherhood for 5 years, another marriage of 13 years dotted with emotional abuse and neglect, and finally another 5 years of single family hood that brought us both to a deeper understanding of the love between us.  My son having just returned from 18 months in the Army joined me in running & building a B&B in Montana and embarking on a new life.  Grateful for having woken to the understanding of who we were and what life truly held for everyone we worked side by side.

In a short 8 months my world would disappear.

The call came around 10am that warm May morning.  Deep down inside I knew something definitive was meant by the man’s message of “Your son and his friend have been in an accident.  They have been taken to the hospital in town.”  Here was a stranger delivering words no one ever wants to hear.  I watched my life merge into a muddy pace as I called out to my business partner to take me to the hospital 15 minutes away in town.  The ache slowly edged its way past the fear settling my mind and bringing a surreal clarity as we drove the miles.  In the distance I glimpsed flashing lights gasping for air I steeled myself as the knowingness from earlier inched closer to my consciousness.  Coming upon the accident I leapt from the van calling to the Universe, “Please not my son, P-L-E-A-S-E!  The trooper turned jockeying his indecision to stop me as a fleeting moment of human love lingered on his face only to be replaced by the robotic role he had been called to play.  My heart shattered.  The essence of love dive bombed past any recognition of my life leaving me numb and lost.

photo-Teri and Josh

Fifteen years is a long time to find your way back by some estimates.  The first week after my son’s death I determined and gave myself permission to take as Long as I needed to heal from the Loss of the Love of my son and find a new way to Link myself to Life.

To give myself permission to explore, heal, build and discover a deeper understanding of life and love was the most courageous gift I could have every imagined.  It wasn’t always easy.  Many days and nights I had to deal with all my guilt.   My anger at the world, myself, my son was given permission to have its turn at the podium.  Time spent realizing that no one could help me heal through this except myself gave me a deeper understanding of life.  In those years after his death, I discovered how truly precious were my friends and family.  Mostly I began to embody how through tragedy and joy we find ourselves and what we think we have lost is still present deep within.  Nothing can truly be lost but sometimes it takes us a long time to realize this truth.

Life is linked to love through loss and the long, deep willingness to feel everything.  Every moment holds love & life in a delicate balance waiting for us to open our eyes and see, feel, hear its call.  You don’t have to experience a loss such as mine to know love and life.  You only need to be open.  Be willing to allow those times of loss to caress you and bring you to a new link, a deeper link to a life and love still waiting.




18 thoughts on “L is for Long, Loss, Love, Link and Life

  1. Lynn Miclea says:

    Teri, this is so beautifully written and has brought tears to my eyes. I am so very touched by the depth of what you have shared here. Thank you. ❤

  2. greyzoned/angelsbark says:

    Teri, I’m so very sorry for your loss. The picture you shared here shows a loving son who looks happy. A handsome boy. Life never is fair, is it? And it’s in the depths of despair that we end up finding some light and semblance of hope. Sounds like the time you spent learning to link with life again was cathartic and moving. Giving you a big loving hug right now. ❤

  3. tericonnolly says:

    Thanks Michelle! Life is filled full of opportunities to discover the road back home. Leaving us aware of our ability to rebuild ❤

  4. renatabu says:

    Beautiful, eloquent, wise but at such a deep price. Thank you for sharing. I wish I knew him but since I know you, I’m happy because he was a part of you and you are an amazing person.

  5. slfinnell says:

    That is a very personal and deep set of thoughts you’ve shared. I know you are helping others heal with your story. God Bless You! *another a to z blogger

  6. Amy K. says:

    I have only ever seen pictures of him as a baby and what a beautiful baby he was… I have spent a lot of time over the years thinking of your loss and now that Iread your words and see the beautiful man he became I am moved further into the emotion of loss and the joy of love. You are blessed to have each other in this and the after life. May you always be linked together on this long journey! xoxo my friend

  7. Beautiful. Thank you for sharing. You’re right, life is linked through all those experiences of love and loss and everything in between. So nice.

  8. Got teary eyed, very well written. I feel the pain of losing someone and your courage to go on with life.

  9. Jasmine I. says:

    Beautiful, open hearted and healed share, Teri – much appreciation for your path and your brilliant spirit. Warm hugs.

    • tericonnolly says:

      Thank you Jasmine for your comment. I am grateful to hear that my healed heart is present in my writing. As I journeyed forward my intent was to heal and love life again. xoxo

  10. Dear Teri. I am sorry to hear about your son. But, he has given you lovely memories and you have appeared stronger, strong enough to share this with all of us. Touching piece of emotion. God bless you always and your son too. Thank you for writing this.

    • tericonnolly says:

      Thank you Shail for you caring words. I was very healing to put into words my memories. Haven spoken about this day and him many times before I found that the written word brought more healing and strength. Thank you for visiting.

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