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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Laura Coleman, as a toddler with her mother. Laura is standing; her mother is sitting wearing a white sweater and tan pants.

Finding What I Left Behind

I sat across the table from my aunt and uncle, who had come to visit my mom. They had offered to take me out to dinner, and we were enjoying a lovely meal. “We want you to come to Hawaii and stay with us when this is all over,” said my aunt to me. “Thank […]

Jimmy, Drew and Willie at Jimmy's birthday party eating pizza

“No Ragrets”

Regret is normal in situations where you lose a loved one or someone close to you. It’s natural, and so easy to fall into thinking about things you wish you’d done, wish you’d said or that you regret doing. The mind too easily focuses on the negative because you are already in a dark place […]

Turquoise rowboat on sand with ocean and blue sky in the background

The Journey Into The Unknown

As human beings, we are defined at our cores by how we respond to hardship. Writing about the Crowleys has taught me that there isn’t one right way, but that each person must find her own path, drawing on her own unique strength, passion and resources … Knowing that each day may be their children’s […]

Baby's feet covered in sand. The baby is wearing a blue outfit. The background is greenish and blurry.

Making Room

Three years ago, we had a really bad thing happen. We lost a father and a husband, and I didn’t think we’d ever get over it, but then this guy next to me came into the picture, and everyone could see I was happy again .. but I was still worried about my kids, Anna […]

Mom and Barbara standing in front of the beach at Bodega Bay. Mom is wearing a green shirt over a green t-shirt; Barbara is wearing a pink shirt and has right arm around Mom.

A Wealthy Soul

I lost the first of my beloveds in 2002 when my cousin Seymour died. Seymour and his wife, Barbara (my dad’s niece) are my second parents. I grew up spending summers, vacations and holidays with them and their family. Barbara and Seymour are my parents’ best friends. They considered me their third child.

Photo of upper half of Paddington the Bear statue. Paddington is wearing a blue jacket and tipping his red hat.

A Bear Called Paddington

Mr. and Mrs. Brown first met Paddington on a railway platform. In fact, that was how he came to have such an unusual name for a bear, for Paddington was the name of the station.Michael Bond I grew up with Paddington the Bear, that endearing, accident-prone, sweet-natured hero of more than two dozen books. When […]

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