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About ericasmom

  • Rank
    Erica's Mom, Dee
  • Birthday 04/20/1956

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
  • Loss Type
    lost my daughter when an AMTRAK hit her car at a broken crossing in Kalamazoo, Michigan
  • Angel Date
    July 14, 2003


  • Occupation
  • Interests
    taking long walks, reading, writing
  • Last Name
  • First Name
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9,478 profile views
  1. As said: Dragonflies are Heaven's messengers. So all of our lovely contact and visions of these wonderful magical creatures are sweet signs. Divianz, I hope the tree planting day that marks your Son's one year passing, has been filled by love. I hope that you felt your Boy nearby perhaps sitting on your shoulder as you planted those trees. God Bless.
  2. Lesley, we all muddle each other's stories...there are many new stories here and so I too, have to go back and look at who lost whom...You came after Shannon was less visible here... Shannon, I think that nobody could have known that Ashley was as close to the edge as she was...perhaps she did not know either until she saw an opportunity to just be done. I think that having each state or city in each state list the numbers of both OD deaths and suicides would be a HUGE wake up call to the world...Wake up we need to make changes.
  3. Shannon, what sadness for you all. I am so sorry. She struggled to find a way and couldn't. I am holding your hands and heart as you face this very sad time.
  4. Divianz, I am so sorrry that you were involved with the flooding, I live near the Des Plaines River but we did not get flooded...I am just outside of Chicago...You do have a lot on your plate with surgery coming up as well as the flood, and all of it flanking that date, that date that marks your Boy's death. We stand with you as you face that benchmark of time. I agree with Susan, if we lived down the block from each other, we would be in your kitchen making a pot of coffee or tea, we would take up a shovel and plant a tree alongside all those that will stand to honor your Boy and help grow the forest stronger.Tomorrow, while you are out planting trees, may you know that your Son is grinning ear to ear that you are honoring his love of the outdoors with a living memorial. We have two trees in Erica's name, one at the school where I work, where she attended, and one at the end of a park that is on the block where we used to live. I tie ribbons on them each year, and the one at school is decorated every April for my Girl's students and me decorate. I love looking up at the upper branches to see some sun bleached old ribbons that stayed fastened to the trees as they grew. I agree with the many reasons you stated about depression. I walked a strip of beach this morning (vacation) asking Erica to help us get better at not just recognizing deep sadness in kids/teens/adults, but with treatment options. As it turns out, and as I feared with nothing in the news about Gillian from our town, she killed herself this weekend. Her sudden death which is leaving a town reeling, leaving a family in shards, was by suicide. Her Dad is a coach at the high school that she and her siblings attend...her mom, an outreach person at a local church...this child had a very loving life and many friends, but something desperately changed her ability to cope...she jumped to her death from a highway overpass. The teachers that I know who knew and loved this Child, are gutted. Nobody saw it. So Angels All, help us become better at starting the conversations earlier, help us teach kids at very young ages how to reach out when they don't feel quite as they should, help us teach them to recognize signs in themselves and ways to get help without stigma. God Help us find ways to be better servants to these Kiddos. Help us always use our voices to gain the strength and guidance and help we need.
  5. Somersky, I am so glad that you have found some respite here, some understanding and protection. Shannon, I am so sad for your news...Ashley was just with you and now is just hanging on. I am sure that your hearts are roken...she was never able to fully forgive herself was she. Poor Baby. Are you in contact wiht her parents? Hug Zak for us all, as we understand the ache and pain he is feeling. Give him a congratulatory hug as well, graduated and ready for the next step. Does he have a next step planned? PTSD is the worst, and most of us have suffered it on some level. Remember to take extra good care of yourselves... Georgina, I know that you don't feel up to the changes coming but boy, it could be that after this surgery, you are going to start being so much healthier. Prayers in that direction sweet Woman.
  6. Sometimes Louanne, we are exactly where the universe needs us to be, you found us when you did, and that is what makes us all smile. And thanks for saying "a nice teacher". I am a loving teacher I know that, and I have good insights and instincts so that is good...sometimes we learn how not to be when we meet up with a mean person, just as important a lesson as we never want to be like that. We learn from the good the bad the sad, all of it. Last evening a friend of mine: teacher, texted and said that a young girl going into sophmore year at our local high school, where my kids went, died suddenly. All I know of her is she was a track star, don't know any circumstances yet. Apparently, she attended our school for 1 and 2 grade but I don't know her never having had her and I teach 3rd. I will reach out to the parents when things settle down some and invite them here. Prayers for Gillian's family.
  7. Lesley, I am thrilled that your Girl made her way down the aisle for graduation. What a feat to find her way to doing so under so big a strain as the loss of her Brother. Good for her and good for you too. Yep, happy/sad. It is the way we roll. I love that the look-alike was near you on the bus and you felt calm. That is definitely the part that lets me know it was a sign from Tommy, a guardian of sorts, letting you know that he riding along too, that he was there for his sis and he is there for you... Lesley and Kate, absolutely true, the whole of depression is still not being treated nor accepted for what it is and it is well past time to do so. I do however feel that there are more public service announcements and blurbs about depression and more awareness being brought to the masses. As a third grade teacher, I talk about sadness and when sadness goes on and on it is something to get help for...that nobody should be alone with their worries or sadness. In our country, it seems more acceptable to be angry than sad, which is why we see such a spike in violent crimes...lets look at the sadness these kids have grown up with and realize that if we treat the sadness, the lack of strong family or the lack of a good education, or the lack of a strong neighborhood school, well we might be able to offset the resulting violence and suicides and out and out depression.
  8. Dianne, I have wondered after you and hoped you were okay...I cannot imagine one thing you have ever posted that could be misconstrued in that way. I am sorry that you have been quietly hurting...I know how that feels though, having had a parent scold me and quit the site allegedly due to my behavior here...I felt horrid about it but honestly, could not find one thing I said to have been hurtful to she or anyone. We can't always have folks interpret our words as we send them I guess. Susan, the dash is beautiful. I love the dash, thank you.
  9. Sherry, I love that inscription you quoted here. So pretty. How goes the gardens and crops? Do you battle Japanese beetles where you are? They cause a great deal of havoc on the flowers and leaves of plants around here. Kate, thanks for asking, Jonathan is doing a bit better each day...he is noticing how much more he can do this week as opposed to last week so that is great. He goes to the doctor tomorrow, 3.5 weeks after his surgery. Moving forward. I hope that the memorial is a great send-off for your friend, that his wife can get through it and hear the good things about her Guy. So hard I know. Prayers. Kate, glad for your good weather, that was us last week but now...We are having more rain tonight after a deluge last night...and tomorrow night is supposed to be even more excessive. THere are many in our state and more than likely in Wisconsin, dealing with flooding. I hope the heavy rains predicted break up and somehow not drench the already over-drenched areas. Laurie, yes, the Erica Reith Fund has done some really good outreach for the kids at our school, and it is what makes me and my family so glad to help in Erica's name. Louanne, you are in a circle of folks who are happy to hold your hands and heart, keep on talking cause we will keep on listening. It was a quiet day here, first time able to get on today, busy with the Grandies.
  10. Colleen, I am so glad for you...releasing that message to the Boy/Man, must be freeing both for you and for him. I know that Brian must be so glad that you have done this. WOW! We never stop learning from the times that changed our lives, and that is important to note, we keep evolving. Louanne, I get what you are saying but what I want you to know is that we involved others right from the get-go. Idon't know that the parents of Eri's friends would have felt comfy reaching out that much had we not set the tone. There were those who could not handle talking about death or Erica's death particularly, as though it was catchy...but those are not the folks that come to Eri-Fest..we purposefully stayed in contact with Erica's friends and therefore some of the parents as we knew them since the kids were tiny. I needed to see the kids and make sure of them, I needed to send them a monthly letter acknowledging the months that ticked past those first 2 years so that they knew that I was going to be okay and to ask if they were doing this, they kept me in the loop of their lives which for my spirit, was a great way to feel Erica through their antics and maturity. There is not rule to say stay involved or not, no one way, no wrong way unless you are injuring yourself through your actions...We find our way in the choices we make. I hope that you can shop in your own town again and perhaps see if you are more comfortable, but if not, you have your routines that work for you. Susan, that Veto is gorgeous...just precious, and the photo is wonderful. Yes, you should place a historical marker in your Port A kitchen...feeding the troops...I am sure it will be another wonderful gathering.
  11. Luanne, I am lucky that so many join in on our Fests in Erica's name. I will never take that for granted. It is also a fund raising event and that keeps the Erica Fund going which supports kids at the school where I teach. The school is where my Kids went when they were little and so I have been writing checks for 12 years now, with Erica's name on them, to help kids whose families cannot afford anything from field trips, to winter clothing,camps, lunch funds, some after school science and math camps, pool passes, scouts, sports, even eye glasses for a couple of kids. It is not a big fund, but each year it does some good work...we received money from folks when Erica was killed, we didn't know why, some thought to help us pay our bills while we were dumbfounded after her death...but I thought long and hard and we put it in the bank and made the Erica Fund. One year the social worker and I took a young girl shopping, she'd never been in a dressing room before...she was very heavy and shared clothing with mom and grandmom, she was going off to middle school so we wanted to provide her her own wardrobe. It was so joyous to see her come out of the dressing room to look in the three way mirror and decide what was good and what she didn't think worked for one way that we have so many supporting us is we have this cause that everyone who comes to ERI-Fest feels good about throwing in a few dollars. We keep Erica alive in this way. In so doing, we get to stay in touch with Erica's closest friends and yesterday, I got to meet three new babies of her friends: Drake, Eleni, and Lincoln. What beautiful little humans that I know Erica delights in...seeing life going on has helped me understand how to live my best life. Being privy to the lives of Erica's and Jonathan's friends helps me stay grounded and purposeful. Kate, how nice your day was yesterday. When we sent our Balloons heavenward, I mentioned Jeff's birthday and I asked everyone there to think of a loved one in addition to Erica and let our hopes fly freely to them. My Grandboy said, wait, I want my balloon back, we told him it was off to heaven, he asked why? I told him that Aunty Erica loves pink ballons so this was our way to share with her. All the little ones held the 19 balloons plus one white one for peace- and released on cue...when Bob Marley was singing, " every little thing, is going to be alright"...Three of my former students showed up at around 8:00 when most folks had packed it in to go home, and I stayed outside with them until 11:00. They are off to college soon...lovely to stay connected to them. Susan, as you plan your gathering, I am thinking of you knowing the energy it takes to host such a big event. Ours is just in our yard and one day, though preparations are pretty involved, yours involves several days and housing...hat is off to you. I know John David is excited to have so many lovely friends and family in one place in his memory. Peace.
  12. STEPHEN...Happy Heavenly Birthday Sweet Handsome Man...Make sure that you wrap your love around your Momma today, and know that you are always her Boy. Maryanne, I have missed seeing you here, good to know you are out there finding your way...and finding your Winnie Balloon. Peace my dear.
  13. Laurie, I would be honored if you share my poetry with others...I have many poems that are just how I breathe now, intake, outbreath, in both is my Girl. ERI-Fest went beautifully, much lighter attendance, but that allowed more visiting with friends and family...and the weather was prettier than ever before, cool and breezy, nobody broke a sweat. 14 years is long long time, and now we have entered our 15th. Yes we will always have a foot in two worlds, it is how life unfolds now...just make sure that when you feel a bit of good, you realize that it will happen again and you will increase those moments as you go along. What in the world could make our Kids more happy than that...seeing us live with increments of purpose and joy...leading to longer stints of each.
  14. For all of our Angels and especially in the light of birthdays and anniversaries, one of the best songs ever written...
  15. Oh Sweet heavens Gretchen, I am so sorry for the sadness that this terrible accident brings to the surrounding your soul too. What a sadness and I will also give thought to these families as we ponder our hard times.