I'm a dreamer at heart and often I like to fly by the seat of my pants.

I suffer from depression and have for most of my life. I am no longer willing to stay silent about it. My hope is to share with others about this disease so they might understand it a bit better.

"I dare to believe!"

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Proof of Existence?

Proof of Existence?

I have to ask myself, "just what is a life worth"?
yesterday I went on a mission while in upstate NY, with the help of my sister and her husband. This was one of the things that I've wanted to do for a long time, to find the grave sites that recorded some of my family history.

It seems the older I get the more I feel a need to find evidence of my heritage and record it. I want to go to these places and touch the stones the markers that make a statement of history. The items that say "I was here, no matter how short or how long my existence and that someone loved me".

I found going to these places brought up some deep feelings and questions. I went to the place where one of my aunts is buried. Her name is Betty Mabel Underhill, the twin sister of my mother, born on Feb. 25, 1925, she died at the age 13 months old and was buried on March 20, 1926, and there was no headstone, no marker, nothing at all, other than the ground sinking to the shape of her little coffin. 

My search continued and I found records of my brother Joseph LoVetro (infant) who died at birth, his burial date was May 4, 1953. The records guided us to the place of his final resting place.  After pacing out row by row and then burial plots to row 18 plot 110, we arrived and once again we found no headstone. I got down on my knees and began to dig, hoping to find a small round concrete marker with the plot number (as we had noticed on some other plots). We found it buried about 2 inches under the grass, a small round 3 inch concrete marker with 110 carved into it. This small tiny piece of concrete is the only evidence of this precious baby's existence.

I find myself briefly grieving for this two babies, even though I never knew them. I ask myself how can anyone bury their baby and not mark his or her existence no matter how brief their life was. Even if they never took their first breath, this is a soul, a living human life from the point of conception.

I realize these tiny bodies beneath the ground are decayed, and returning to dust but they themselves, their souls, I believe sore in Heaven and their bodies are whole and pain free with my Lord. I understand that the rituals of funerals and the placing of headstones are for those of us left behind on this earth. This is perhaps a part of the grieving process for some of us.

Through the process of this journey I have made a promise to myself that my brother Joey and my Aunt Betty will have a proper headstone. Even if no one ever visits their place of rest. I will know they now have their marker as a statement that says "I was here, no matter how short or how long my existence and that someone loved me".

Betty Mabel Underhill
1925 - 1926

Joseph LoVetro (Infant)
May 1953

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Mother's Day: The Other Side

Mother's Day: The Other Side

For some, days like today Mother’s day (or Father’s day) is a wonderful time of celebrating, remembering the wonderful times of their childhood. Memories they will cherish in their hearts forever. They are thankful for the blessed childhood they had (or have)… For some, their parents are no longer with them and they yearn for just one more hug or “I love you”.  They treasure the times of yesterday.

These children had (have) a mom and/or dad that supported them, cheered them on, and encouraged them.  Their parents never spoke “down” to them, calling them “good for nothing”, “stupid”, “lazy”, “dim-witted” and other demeaning names that I won’t list here because they are too offensive, but you understand my point I’m sure. For these children they are truly blessed.

However there are thousands upon thousands of children who were (are) not blessed in this way.  For some this is not a time of fond memories and happy times,  for some their childhood was (and is) full of fighting, yelling and abuse that came in many forms from neglect to emotional and verbal abuse, to physical and sexual abuse... for these little ones and even as adults they hide their silent tears....
Remember YOU are the one(s) who are forming your child’s life…  Children are a gift from God, treasure them, encourage them, and speak kind words to them.  Don’t demean them or abuse them.  Tell them you love them, hug them and lift them up into your arms and protect them.  This is YOUR responsibility as a parent.  

IF you cannot do this, put your children in the care of someone who can do this for you, and for them, be a responsible adult, step back and get help for yourself.

They cry silent tears, they live silent lives, and some will die a silent death never knowing what it’s like to have a happy healthy childhood.

This day I reach out and send love and hugs to those who still suffer in silence… you are not alone.

Report Child Abuse:  1-800-4 A CHILD (1-800-422-4453)