15 Real Things to say to Someone Who Has Lost a Loved One


Nine years since I held my mom’s hand.
9 years since she read a book to my girls.
111111111 years since I heard her laugh.
Nine years since I had a mom to call for – well, anything.
9 years since I saw her face.
111111111 years since I’ve heard her voice.
Nine years since I smelled her smell.
9 years since I’ve had her homemade carmel.
111111111 years since we sat and said nothing.
Nine years since a family dinner with her.
9 years – no new pictures. No new memories.

I cannot believe it’s been NINE years.
Oh…those years have been long…and short.

I miss knowing that there’s one person (human) on the planet that loves you more than anything….MOM.
I miss having her to call – who fights my battles when I ask, who listens and takes my side (ha!) – seriously, only a mom does this!
I miss telling her about all the wonderful things my kids can do – like ride a bike…debate… oh Teenpact – my mom would be so proud and honored to serve there and watch debates! She was really into politics!
I miss watching Shirley Temple movies with her on a lazy Sunday afternoon.
I miss having her in the car on the way to MO so I can ask her, “Now which house was that again mom?” (She said it drove her crazy that I asked repeatedly for so many years, but she secretly loved it because it was me learning more about her!)
I miss being able to ask her questions about what I was like – where we lived, and the like.
I miss having family holidays together.
I miss celebrating my birthday with my family. It was a given what you were doing on your bday – we were always together. If you wanted to do something with your friends, pick a different day. 🙂
I miss black Friday shopping with her – or in competition with her to get the best deal – who could get their first!
I miss her joy from the sound of Kennedi’s voice. (KK’s baby voice was adorable!)
I miss her Coke Cake for my bday.
I miss pigs in a blanket – even though I didn’t love them, she made them for me on my last birthday she as alive and I will NEVER forget the effort and love my very sick mom put into celebrating me that day!
I miss arguing over which Lifechurch.tv campus we would attend this weekend. (I argued, but we always went her way after SOKC opened. I enjoyed razzing my mom…alot.)

Now, I know all the well meaning Christian’s will try to encourage me with  – God has you now, He’s the one who knows everything about you,  encourage yourself, keep your chin up, your mom is in a better place, you will see her again someday, He gives and takes away, it was her time, be thankful for what you had, you have family in us, and the like. I know your hearts are pure and right toward me and I love you in advance for it. It is VERY hard to know what to say to someone who’s got a FOREVER empty chair, but let me assure you that there are some awesome things you could say.

Hurting people need to hear from REAL people that know the flesh is real. The struggle is real. It’s OKAY to grieve! It’s okay to hurt. It’s okay to cry!

Here are 14 REAL things you could say:

  1. That sucks. 
  2. How are you? 
  3. I remember. (I didn’t forget is a big deal to hear.) 
  4. I am sorry you don’t have your mom.
  5. I am sorry your kids don’t have their Gma. 
  6. I am sorry – it hurts to be separated because on this earth it can feel like forever. 
  7. Can I just hug you?
  8. Will you tell me about something awesome your kids have done because I genuinely want to know? 
  9. It hurts my heart to think of losing my mom. I am sorry. 
  10. I lost my mom too – so I know what you are going thru (There is a bond is this – because you know they know.) 
  11. We weren’t created to be separated. It stinks. It hurts. Can I just hug you? 
  12. Nine years is a long time. How are you doing? 
  13. I don’t believe God took her, but I KNOW He received her. (this one only if you can’t think of anything else to say)
  14. Will you join us for Thanksgiving – forever? 🙂 (kidding, our family has found our stride here and it’s peaceful, but at first this was actually a HUGE blessing!)
  15. Say nothing and come just sit with me. 

We have peace that transcends understanding. The Joy that comes in the morning -finally showed up about 4 months after I lost my mom. But there are days that my flesh rips and cries out. I MISS her with everything in me! I miss her deeply. I wish I could tell her she was right – that Spencer looks JUST like her! But I can’t! I can’t pick up the phone.

In 2006, I learned that grief is not my identity. But I can grieve without having it consume me and remold me. I can sob, cry, kick, and scream, and tell God how much it SUCKS! Then I quite literally draw a line in the carpet (with my foot) and say, “

I am stepping into my IDNJC (Identity in Jesus Christ) now! I am a masterpiece – created to be holy and blameless in HIS sight – no matter how I see myself or anyone else sees me! I am loved and chosen. God knew me before my OWN MOTHER did! I CHOOSE life and CHOOSE to rest in His love THIS day!”

One day at a time!
One smile at a time! I choose life!


Ps – to my sister Stephanie. I love you so very much! I believe in you! I am so thankful to know that we share our mom…you know intimately the ache in my heart. I just want you to know that I am praying for you today too! I LOVE YOU sister!


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