Trauma and Healing After the Death of a Beloved

I was an exceptionally awkward, self-conscious, sensitive child. A middle child to an exceptionally bright, ambitious, and academic father and a mentally ill stay-at-home mother who was overburdened by the task of caring for three children, I found solace and escape through books. They were my original portal to another reality, and I soaked up as much as I could, burying myself ceaselessly in reading as much as I could manage. While I felt sympathetic toward my mother’s plight, I was also determined not to be like her and used to proclaim as a child that I would one day…