Renewing My Mind


Death Anniversaries are hard… there is no way around that. There’s not a way to predict if “this year will be harder, or easier” or even what the scale would look like if there was one to begin with. Grief is a unique emotion and plays with the other emotions we go through and are currently experiencing, I’ve discovered.

July 1 is a hard day. It just is. I want it to be a day that I pause and reflect, let myself feel. I also want to connect with my loved ones and relate with them as they experience July 1 too.  But I don’t want them to feel they NEED to spend time with me, as that isn’t the point. I want to be strong for those that are also grieving; his brothers, the other family that lost their son too, his friends, his stepdad, but I can’t know what they need, even though I desperately want to make this less painful for them. It’s just hard… everyone grieves differently and needs the space to do it as they process their own journey. It is a time of honoring and giving room to just be. I wish there were a manual, a place, a guidebook to scroll through to check and see if I’m doing this “well”…

Today, July 2, I am reflecting on how I want this day to look and renewing my mind a bit.  Asking myself questions, and using the coach approach with myself.  What would make this day better for me? What could I do that would create a space of “grieving well” on this date going forward? What do I need to do for myself? For others? I know I cannot dictate others’ actions, nor would I want to, so what is it that I want to be sure to do for myself that doesn’t depend on others on this date?

Even as I type these questions out, I feel a renewing beginning to happen: a lifting of the burden of wanting this Hard Day to be better, and just allowing myself to “be”. I am realizing that in stressing about the “doing it well” I was overlooking the “being” well in the process. To “be” fully present when my breath catches as I recall Jeremy’s life moments that brought great joy, laughter, and love; to “be” aware that love is eternal and I can think on those things that are eternal, just gone from my earthly experience – his laugh, his sense of humor, that smile that lit up every gathering he was at.  How that grin must be even larger in heaven!  To “be” gentle with myself as I circle and cycle through the grief journey, wanting to know the end, but realizing more with each passing year, it continues. Lessens in intensity, but it is a lifelong process I am learning. Each event, each milestone, there is an awareness of his absence and we grieve a bit more, little by little, letting another tear gently fall to once again cleanse the soul of a bit more sadness.

So, next year, I will be sure to write my son a letter, watch his video/photo montage, sit in his memorial garden and create space to be present with myself. This day is hard…and I can sit with God and let Him hold me as I continue to walk forward this year, and, Lord willing, be even more present in the next Hard Day.


  1. Kelly Bohlsen on July 13, 2018 at 4:46 pm

    I LOVE this Pam. I just love it.
    I hear your voice with every word…. I hear your wisdom counsel others , but know that you still grieve as you focus to bring the presence of God to all who hurt.
    I love how you share glimpses of your raw truths even though you appear to be so poised and collected.
    God is definitely using you to bless others!
    Beautiful words my friend.

    • Pamela on September 2, 2018 at 8:42 pm

      Thank you, Kelly! I just continue to ask Father to use me and all in my life for His good and glory. He is so good and gentle with me, I can’t help but share about Him.

  2. Vicky Munzel on July 13, 2018 at 8:46 pm

    You explained this so beautifully! It made me feel more confident in my own healing process. Thank you and hugs from another mama’s heart.

    • Pamela on September 2, 2018 at 8:45 pm

      Thank you, Vicky~hugs to you as you continue on your journey. Love never ends…it is the bond that holds us together for forever.

  3. Mary (Bye) Wressell on July 15, 2018 at 8:56 am

    Beautiful, Pam. Thank you.

    • pamela on September 2, 2018 at 8:46 pm

      Thanks, Mary! I appreciate your comments on my new blog! blessings to you and your family!

  4. DeAnna Ganz on July 17, 2018 at 8:11 pm

    “Each event, each milestone, there is an awareness of his absence and we grieve a bit more, little by little, letting another tear gently fall to once again cleanse the soul of a bit more sadness.” I have been pondering this idea that tears cleanse the soul. Could it be that when we embrace the grief we find comfort?
    “Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.” ~ Jesus

    • pamela on September 2, 2018 at 8:44 pm

      DeAnna – oh yes, I believe this to be so true…that as we mourn, the Lord is near the brokenhearted and lifts us up and brings us comfort. And then we get to comfort others in the way we ourselves have received His comfort – 2 Cor 1. I pray that you, too, are feeling the Comfort from the Comforter Himself.

  5. Amy Belchak on July 17, 2018 at 9:38 pm

    Beautifully written! Your rawness, honesty, and vulnerability is so beautiful and inspiring! Thank you for sharing your heart with us, God is definitely using it for His glory and goodness and allowing healing to take place as well!
    Love you?

    • Pamela on September 2, 2018 at 8:47 pm

      Amy, thank you for your kind words of encouragement. He is the Healer and have given me so much, I can’t help but to share it. Love you too!