Life Without Judgment

When that date comes around, again.

My brother died on a highway. I have often thought about traveling to the location where he spent his last moment alive. I am unsure whether I will actually do it. I don’t know when I would go, what I would do there, and what the experience would mean to me. What I do know is that I have a choice. I can choose to go, or not to go, depending on what I decide serves me best. Places are one of several types of grief triggers I’ve experienced. Sometimes, you can opt to avoid a difficult place. In my case, I can completely avoid ever going to the place where my brother died if I decide that is best for me. I have a harder time avoiding the place where my husband gave me the news about my brother,

Think twice before saying "at least" to people in crisis, in grief, in illness.

It happens all the time. Bereaved parents hear it: At least you have another child. At least you could get pregnant again. People who lost a loved one to a difficult illness hear it: At least he isn’t suffering anymore. At least she is out of pain. People who lost a loved one in an instant hear it: At least she didn’t suffer. At least he died instantly. People who lost an adult sibling hear it: At least you had so many wonderful years with your sister. At least you and your brother were close. Cancer patients, and families of cancer patients, hear it: At least it’s treatable. At least you haven’t lost your hair. People suffering from painful chronic illnesses hear it: At least you are still

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