You can’t have missed the heartbreaking news last week about the loss of sweet Madeline Alice Spohr, or the outpouring of love and support for her parents, Heather and Mike.
I’ve read Heather’s blog (The Spohrs Are Multiplying) only a few times. So last week it felt strange to try to write about the a loss that happened to someone I don’t even know, even though I felt it bone-deep, as another mother. So I didn’t. I couldn’t. The words were a mix of heavy and weightless. Some fell through me, some drifted away before I could see their shape. Instead, I read the words that so many of you were able to write about this loss that we felt as mothers, as fathers, as friends. I cried several times.
There’s much to say about how so many people took their sadness and wove it into a lifeline for the Spohrs, by contributing money and resources. It overwhelms me, looking back over this week, what a force we can become when we are called upon.
You all know the theory of six degrees of separation. This last week felt like five of those degrees were unnecessary.
No separation at all.
And now, tonight, there’s news of another tragic loss in our community. Shana, who blogs at gorillabuns, lost her son Thalon this afternoon.
Though I don’t know this family, I reeled with this news as I had with the first. How could it be? Another baby. It’s too much. Each tragedy on its own is too much to bear, but one so close after the other is beyond understanding. It’s more than a heart can take.
There we all were last week, trying to make sense of it. Here we are, again. So many of us, connected by this thing we do, by parenthood, by friendship, by this community where the ties are thread-slender and yet somehow strong. Sharing one collective broken heart.
I don’t know how to say all of this. Or how not to, it turns out. It’s not new, this kind of sadness. But then, yes, it is. It is new and fresh and cruel. And for those parents, and families, and friends…bottomless.
And it’s enough, universe. It’s enough. Way past that line. So far past.
For information how you can help, go to a special page For Maddie, at A Mom Two Boys. All the information you need is there. (Also, there’s a badge in my sidebar that will take you to the Paypal account that was set up to help the Spohrs with funeral expenses.)
I’m hoping to see the same kind of swell of support for Shana and her family. I’ll post any details that I can find.
UPDATE: Sarah, of the blog Whoorl, has set up a Paypal account to accept donations to help Shana’s family “with the expenses of Thalon’s hospital stay and funeral services. Please feel free to use the button on your website to help spread the word.”
If you want to use the button, just right click to save it, then link it to the paypal account.