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car and returning home just after five o’clock that Wednesday. He had looked down and was changing the radio station. When he looked up, it was too late. They hit head-on and my sister was killed.
Yearning For Change
I was so angry. I hated that man. Even though I wanted to be a good Christian, I couldn’t figure out how to forgive him for killing my sister. Maybe you felt this way too. Did you wish him dead? Did you wish him locked up and the keys thrown away? Did you call him names and
hate that his family got to have him but your family would never have your loved one again?
Did you cry out for justice? Did you see the glaring errors in how the incident was handled and disagree with what the authorities did? Did this whole epidemic of drunk driving rise to the level of absolute injustice that must stop NOW?
You are not alone.
The pain is overwhelming and just making it through the day can be seemingly unachievable. It’s a long and painful journey. Each of our stories will be different yet oh, so similar. There’s a shared suffering that many people simply can’t relate to and it changes us forever.
I’m so sorry for your loss. I know that pain and it is horrific.
My sister was killed by a drunk driver in 1992. She was only 44 years-old and was a mother of three children. Her youngest was only 12 at the time.
I vividly remember the day I got the call. The shock. The finality. The anger. The pain. The hurt.
He was driving home after spending the afternoon fishing and drinking. He had an open container in the car. It happened on a windy road in small town Minnesota on a beautiful September day. My sister was riding in her girlfriend’s
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I have found the following to be helpful…
1. Talking to others who have gone through something similar because they can understand what you are experiencing.
2. Memorializing your loved one. We are all here on earth for a purpose and we all have things that make us unique. There are many ways we can recognize and honor the gifts our loved-one brought to this world. Donating to a cause your loved one was devoted to or participating in an event that he or she was particularly interested in can keep their memory alive.
3. Forgiving was a long, long journey for me. Initially I didn’t see the importance of it or the likelihood that it would ever happen. However, over the years I couldn’t deny the negative impact it was having on my life, my attitude, and my ability to live and enjoy each moment. I was caught living in the past and pursuing the anger as a righteous cause. Lord knows, it was righteous enough! But God had to teach me what was healing and effective and what was simply bitterness destroying my life.
4. Living one day at a time. I literally couldn’t manage the avalanche of grief that would begin as I projected ahead-even just months ahead. The first Thanksgiving without her or the first Christmas. It was most helpful to just focus on the present day and what needed to be done right now, rather than think ahead.
5. Self-care…ugh. This is the hardest thing to do when we are in such a painful place. When grieving, even the most basic tasks like sleeping and eating pose a huge challenge. Perhaps you just don’t feel hungry or maybe nightmares awaken you soon after you fall asleep. Although this may be normal, a myriad of problems can arise from lack of proper sleep and nutrition.
6. Journaling helped me get rid of some of the anger. Some days I would write just about my memories of her and other times I would write about my anger at the man responsible for her death. I found it helpful to simply get it out of my heart and mind.
7. Intentionally adding laughter back into life was very helpful to me. I would make myself rent a funny video just to recognize I needed to laugh and that my sister would want that for me too. It wasn’t easy though. I didn’t feel like laughing. It was something I simply had to do even though I didn’t feel like it at the time.
8. Getting out in nature played a big role in my healing. There was a state park near my home so I took the dog and went for long walks through the woods. Sometimes I would take drawing pencils and paper with me. Sitting on a downed log, I spent hours sketching the beauty of nature while reminding myself that my sister was in heaven enjoying the ultimate beauty.