There must be something strangely sacred about salt. It is in our tears and in the sea.Kahlil Gibran

Those of us who’ve suffered one or more devastating losses often describe grief as being like the ocean with pain and longing breaking over us in waves. At times, the sadness is overwhelming, and we feel as though we’re drowning. But over time, we learn to float, to keep our head above water. We begin to recognize when the big waves are coming and become better able to deal with them. Although we never escape the sadness, we learn to navigate the waters of grief and move forward into the life we create in the wake of our loss.

a panoramic photo of Pismo Beach at sunset

During my darkest days, I found that the wisdom and experience of other grievers helped me to re-enter the world. They showed me that life after the death of a beloved was possible, that I could begin to see beauty, find grace and feel hope, even joy. They helped me realize that love was all around me, and all I had to do was lean in.

At Salt Water, our community can help you find your equilibrium and begin to heal after an unbearable loss. As Barbara Kingsolver put it so beautifully in High Tide in Tucson:

What a stroke of luck. What a singular brute feat of outrageous fortune: to be born into citizenship in the animal kingdom. We love and we lose, go back to the start and do it right over again. For every heavy forebrain solemnly cataloguing the facts of a harsh landscape, there’s a rush of intuition behind it crying out: High tide! Time to move out into the glorious debris. Time to take this life for what it is.

We invite you to become part of our community. Share your story, ask a question, make a comment. We’d love to hear from you.

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The Son Also Rises

My father was killed by cancer at the age of 43. I was 18 at the time. When I turned 43, I began honoring his memory by raising money for and awareness of cancer focused charities — primarily the LIVESTRONG Foundation and Pelatonia.

Alyssa with her head on her brother Rudy's shoulder. Rudy is wearing a checked shirt and is winking at the camera.

Grief Is Our Last Act Of Love

That’s when the phone rang, and my heart dropped because I knew something was wrong. The caller ID read Pomona Valley Hospital. As I answered the phone, I heard a soft female voice ask if I was related to Jennifer Fuentes. I said, “Yes, she’s my sister-in-law.” She said, “there’s been a motor vehicle accident, and you need to get to Pomona Valley Hospital.”

The author's black and white Boston Terrier, Hope

Hope

You went missing nine years ago today, and every moment since, we have been praying you would find your back into our arms, the place where you belong.

scott and judy holding ice pops

I Miss My Wife

Scott is the father of four grown children and a technology innovation professional, recreational cyclist, tenor, 14-year testicular cancer survivor and longtime advocate and volunteer in the cancer community.

Stephanie Morfitt and her siblings. They all have race numbers on. Steph is second from the left. Her sister, Sissi is in the center.

Sissi

My older sister died in February from end stage liver disease. She was an alcoholic. She was also a chemist, an avid craft connoisseur, an animal lover, a friend, a daughter and stepdaughter and a person with a beautiful heart and smile. Tracey (“Sissi”) was also a twin, born in August 1969 alongside Kelly, who […]

Margo holding Jimmy age 1 month. Margo is looking at Jimmy on her left shoulder; Jimmy is looking at the camer

Wonder

Doctors have come from distant cities, just to see me, stand over my bed, disbelieving what they’re seeing. They say I must be one of the wonders, god’s own creation and as far as they see they can offer no explanation — Natalie Merchant

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