“In increments both measurable and not, our childhood is stolen from us– not always in one momentous event but often in a series of small robberies, which add up to the same loss.” – John Irving

This past year of my life is one of endings: my grandmother died; my mother died; my husband and I moved to a new state, which is the first time I have ever moved away from my hometown. The year has consisted of several momentous events, one right after the other.

I feel like the bridge spanning my childhood to my adult life has been torched, never to be rebuilt.

I am sure this is overly dramatic. Nothing changes all at once. Those small robberies begin very early in life and continue to accrue. My childhood was no different.

In spite of all the loss, I am grateful for many blessings. I still have my dad. I am grateful that I am married to a loving and gentle man, and that I do not have to face these things alone. I am grateful for the nearly three decades I got to spend with these two beautiful women. Twenty-nine feels young for such loss, but I imagine how much harder it would have been at nineteen or nine. I take none of those precious years for granted.

One era ends and another begins. I do not know what the next chapters will hold. Though they begin with grief, I do not believe the sorrow will endure. In its place will come bittersweetness, and perhaps, there will even be room for moments of joy.