Forgot your password?

We just sent you an email, containing instructions for how to reset your password.

Sign in

  • I love my son.

    My son. Mark Evan Shepherd was tragically struck by lightning while playing on a soccer field when we was a vibrant 11 year old boy. It was a stormy spring day in May, in Plymouth Michigan. Thunderstorms can appear out of nowhere this time of year. I remember receiving the news over the phone, I was living in Chicago at the time, about a 5 hour panicked drive to the hospital where he was lying, I could not imagine what his damaged, dehydrated body and mind must have been experiencing. I rushed as quickly as I could. This was a difficult time for the entire family. So much distance and pain between us all. All I could do was lie there with him as he breathed, motionless, tubes and all kinds of monitoring wires connected to machines. Not much information, other than he would recover with extensive nerve damage, and some unknown amount of brain damage. There is this powerless feeling that overwhelms you at times, knowing you want to protect and shelter your children from any kind of suffering. It never goes away. It is really something I never really felt fully or examined until recently. I believe we hide from pain, in this case traumatic shared pain, it is something I learned can and will overwhelm you. Listening to this pain is actually the only way to receive and remain open to the joyful feelings that will be available, if we remain open to feeling them. Too often I learned to avoid, or self-medicate, and in this culture we are told instantly, the moment pain strikes - to prescribe ourselves with mood-altering pills, exercise, reach out to loved ones, find anyway to cope. Anything to take the pain away - because that pain will consume you. Right?

    But maybe these moments are opportunities to embrace and not really accept but accommodate to loss and inevitable change.
    It is about HOW we choose to look at the events in life in relationship to HOW we are trained to feel?
    For really truly feeling what is present we need to begin to accept these things as part of living, just as much as we seek and grasp at the happy and content moments, it may be equally as important to sit with the sorrowful, regretful, desperate and self loathing moments?

    Maybe this was a moment to learn and understand the importance of appreciating our bodies, and how they play an important role in communicating to us? I so often get stuck in the same loop in my head. Thinking I can figure my way out of any problem or issue. But my son, his unpredictable accident, and the way he has grown and excelled in every challenge has taught me the importance of listening. And allowing the space to accomodate. Let go a little perhaps of all the desires to control and hold onto life.

    Listen to you inner chatter today for fifteen minutes. Truly listen. Accept this as a part of you. Listen to your body, what can it teach you?
    • Share

    Connected stories:


Collections let you gather your favorite stories into shareable groups.

To collect stories, please become a Citizen.

    Copy and paste this embed code into your web page:

    px wide
    px tall
    Send this story to a friend:
    Would you like to send another?

      To retell stories, please .

        Sprouting stories lets you respond with a story of your own — like telling stories ’round a campfire.

        To sprout stories, please .

            Better browser, please.

            To view Cowbird, please use the latest version of Chrome, Safari, Firefox, Opera, or Internet Explorer.