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February 2015

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Leesburg Chapter
February 2015

A Warm Welcome
Suzie Bartel, mother of Ryan
Suzanna and Kevin Demski, parents of Michael John
Diamante, Monica, and Preasha Ellis: father, grandmother and aunt of Devin Nicole Ellis
Bonnie and Colin Savage, mother and brother of Nick

A Very Special Thank You
Brother David Schlatter for his tender words and his moving and loving presentation of the Bells of Remembrance.
Elizabeth Pickett for her handmade heart ornaments in loving memory of her mother and her daughter, Callie.

Thank You for Your Love Gifts
Bev and Wright Horton, in loving memory of their son, James
Beth and Nils Jesperson, in loving memory of their son, Eirik
Betsy and Brad Quin, in loving memory of their son, Michael

We Know About Love
I believe that bereaved parents know more about true love than others. We know the love for our child when they were in the womb before we even met them. We know about loving them when they are helpless infants with nothing to give back. We know what it is like to love our toddlers through the terrible two’s (if we are blessed enough to have them that long). We know about loving our child through potty training, temper tantrums, sickness, stubbornness and learning difficulties. We know about loving them through the difficult teenage years. Some of us know what it is like loving our children through rebellion, bad choices, rejection, through depression, mental illness, through alcohol and drug addiction, and through physical illness and more. We have loved our children through it all, whether they have lived only in the womb or to adulthood. We know what it means to love our child so deeply within our hearts that we ache with love because they are no longer physically here. It is a love so deeply embedded within us and nobody but another bereaved parent could know the depth of this kind of love. Please, dear bereaved parents, do not let this kind of love be quenched and wasted by keeping it only within. For our precious children’s sake, open your hearts to love and give their love away to others and it will surely come back to you. On our son Brian’s grave marker we had this inscribed:

“For love is as strong as death…”
“Many waters cannot quench love, rivers cannot wash it away.” Song of Songs 8:6b,7a.
Much love to you all,
~Beverly Elero, TCF, Leesburg, VA In loving memory of our sons Brian Patrick and Brent Joseph


Love Letter to My Compassionate Friends
This is my love letter to you on Valentine’s Day. When Sarah died I thought my heart would never again feel anything except pain. I was so overwhelmed with grief. My thoughts and feelings were only on my own tragedy. And then I met you.

You shared your sorrow and your tears with me. I learned of your loss, your life, your children now gone. And my heart was broken for you — my weary heart, that I thought would never care about anyone else ever again.

When you shared the hurting, vulnerable, intimate core of yourself with me, my heart was revived. When you trusted me to know your precious child and your bruised love for this one who was the delight of your heart, my exhausted soul was encouraged. Your words comfort me. Your hugs strengthen me. Your tears quench my thirst.

As I see you heal, I know that I also become whole again. When I hear you laugh, I trust that lightness will one day return to my heart. Thank you for being my compassionate friend. I love you.
~Linda M., TCF, Medford, OR

A Love Song
The mention of my child’s name may bring tears to my eyes. But it never fails to bring music to my ears.
If you are really my friend, please don’t keep me from hearing the beautiful music of his name. It soothes my broken heart and fills my soul with love.
~Nancy Williams, TCF, New Jersey

“Grief over the death of a child is the hardest work that most of us will ever do. While we all wish for the pain to stop, we need to remember that we grieve intensely because we loved intensely. It is unrealistic to expect the grief to ever totally go away, because the love we have for our child will never go away. Our grief is an act of love and is nothing for which we should be ashamed.”
~Elaine Grier, Philip’s Mom, TCF, Atlanta, GA

In this life we cannot do great things. We can only do small things with great love.”
~Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta