Months have passed since Brianna died and the grief we feel is sometimes insurmountable. I have told my husband I am broken and will never be the same. I suspect he feels the same. But I do have days when the grief does not consume me and I think of our talented daughter with a smile on my face. Other times, I just sit and cry in disbelief that she is gone and that life has dealt us this nightmarish blow.
To help me weather the worst kind of grief a parent can experience, I have turned to my art and have started a new blog: Art & Healing. There, you will find some of the art I am creating and some of the emotional roller coaster we are still one. I lose myself in my art, and I have some quiet moments when I think I am still the mother of two children, before reality sets in. I love our son Trevor and know he is suffering too. But his life is still ahead of him, and he tries hard to try to be "just another 16-year-old" at school and with his friends. We understand, but also talk about the pain we all feel.
We have finally set up the charitable giving fund in Brianna's name. It is managed by Fidelty Charitable Gift Fund. This means that every year, our family and friends can donate to the fund and the donations are tax deductible. However, the minimum donation is $1,000. We are looking into ways that smaller donations can be made, either by matching funds or pooling donations.
In addition, we are also going through the charity or charities that could benefit from this money. Organizations, colleges or institutions that promote art will be our focus, since Brianna had a passion for art. For those of you who donated, we thank you so very much for your kindness.
I will be adding links about the charitable giving fund on my new blog and website. We appreciate the love we have felt from so many in the arts community, from friends and family, and Brianna's friends. I will leave you with a quote from the book I read often, Healing After Loss, by Martha Whitmore Hickman:
I am, and always will be, a part of all that I have known.