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  • Writer's pictureAmie Kerber

I didn't think it could happen to me.

You're never prepared to become the product of your worst nightmares.

Most people know that my childhood wouldn't be described as "stable." I have stable people who remain in my life that were positive influences, and I have family members who are incredibly loving and supportive, but my biological mother and father would not fall into this category. It's something that largely impacted how I grew up - I strove to do well in school, I avoided alcohol and drugs, I focused on doing things "right." I continued to do that into adulthood. I went to nursing school right out of high school, I was rarely irresponsible, I tried to do well and succeed in everything I did. It's also why I continue to find myself with so many things on my plate. I am a do-er. I'd rather be busy getting things done than sitting idly.

I largely believed that because I had overcome an environment that was not conducive to my success in life, I would mostly be free of experiencing painful events. How naive does that sound? How many of you believe the same thing right now?

My goal in becoming a mother has always been, and will always be, to provide a stable environment for my kids. It's in everything I've tried to weave in to their lives, from the dance studio we selected, to the fact that the kids remained in the same day home for as long as they did. I wanted them to feel comfortable and confident in their environments, and in doing so, I felt good about the life we were creating as a family.

I'd done it. I'd defied the poor odds and I had my 2 healthy kids, my stable job, my solid relationship, and white picket fence (not really, but you get the idea) by the time I was 30.

I would give anything to go back to that idyllic world. I recognize that in this, we were incredibly privileged, and I knew how lucky I was. But truthfully, I also felt like I deserved it.

I never thought that at 30, I would have everything I'd ever hoped for, and then have one of the core pieces of it taken away. A piece that I would give my own life for without a second thought. I never thought I would be able to say with confidence that the happiest days of my entire life now lie behind me. Its sobering to have that realization. I will never again reach that level of happiness. Will I experience happiness? Of course. I still do even now, how could I not when I have another mischievous little girl that keeps me on my toes? But my happiness henceforth will be matched with sadness. There will never again be one without the other.

If I could wish one thing for our grief-avoidant society it would be this; please see the little things, the minor annoyances, the inconveniences for what they are - unimportant. Prioritize the people in your life that provide you with the love you deserve. Set boundaries, and don't be timid about it, with the ones who don't. Treat yourself with respect. And be so grateful for the good things you have in your life. Because you probably don't think it could happen to you, just like I didn't think it could happen to me.

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Stacy Fang
Stacy Fang
Oct 29, 2020

Thank you for this. I will be living a better life with memories of Quinn and your words and thoughts. Sending love your way.


Oct 29, 2020

You are a beautiful writer

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