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Dealing With The Loss of a Child
My Story

Inspiring Hope, One Day at a Time

As a pediatrician, married mom of three biological children and one foster son, my life was busy, rushing off to my office four days a week, seeing patients for three and working as a medical director of a local physician organization for one. I balanced this with rushing off to shuttle my kids to after sports and other after school activities. All of this changed one day in August of 2018 when my 14 year old son, Andy, was killed in a car accident. I felt like my life was over, and in some ways it was over, and a new life was forced to begin in its place. 

Grief is seldom discussed openly in our culture, and the death of a child makes people feel even more uncomfortable. On this blog and podcast, ‘Losing a Child: Always Andy’s Mom’, the topic is approached openly and honestly, speaking to people who have lost loved ones and experts who help care for them. Whether you are a parent experiencing loss or someone who wants to support another going through this tragedy, this blog and podcast strives to offer hope and help.

“Be still and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10

A Love for Music

My son, Andy, was extremely musically talented. Music really spoke to him. Once when he was 5 years old, we took him to a Trans-Siberian Orchestra concert. I looked to him at one point of the concert and he had tears freely flowing down his face. I quickly asked him what was wrong. His reply, ‘The music, it’s just so sad.’ 

He played the piano for many years and played his French Horn, that he named Frenchie, for three. His greatest instrument though, was his own voice. He was a head chorister for the Grand Rapids Choir of Men and Boys and sang with the choir for five years. This video is a clip of one of his final solos, fitting as he sings about ‘fitting ourselves for heaven.

Recent Blog

 

A New World

My regular listeners know that every Thursday morning, I release a new podcast episode. Today, that is not happening. I feel like over the past week and a half, the whole world has changed. COVD-19 has changed everything. Everyone seems to have an opinion, ranging...

18 Months

18 months. How can it be 18 months since I have seen my Andy smile or hugged him close?  How can it be 18 months since I heard his voice or his wonderful laugh? How can it be 18 months since I last kissed the top of his head? 18 months ago right now, Andy was in our...

25 Years

December 28th was my least favorite day on the calendar until our accident on August 15, 2018. December 28, 1994 was the day my mother died from breast cancer at the age of 42, four years younger than I am right now. I have been thinking about this day coming as I...

Recent Podcast

 

Episode 30: Tatum’s Mom

Tatum was 13 months old when he died early Christmas morning just over three months ago. Much of Tatum's short life was spent in the hospital due to complications of biliary atresia, a rare congenital disorder of the liver and biliary system that leads to liver...

Episode 29: Grieving in a Pandemic

After a week off due to the COVID pandemic and the stresses surrounding it, I decided to restart the podcast. I tried stuffing my grief down deep into myself, feeling like it was not important enough to give any attention to during these trying times, but that is not...

Episode 28: Max’s Mom

Today on Always Andy's Mom, I talk with Shan, whose first-born son, Max, died at 15 months of age from Sudden Unexplained Death in Epilepsy. Max was a healthy, growing boy until having his first seizure at 8 months of age. Over the next few months, they adjusted...