“Please know, you are the only people I’d refer my friends to in times of need.”
We consider ourselves story-tellers, so today we’d like to share a story with you.
Carol’s son overdosed on fentanyl three years ago this summer. She was devastated. He was bright, witty, and articulate. Very artistic and creative.
When Carol met with the funeral director to plan his memorial service, she requested that whomever would lead the service would respect her family’s religious and spiritual sensitivities. He said he knew just the people who would do that. So, Someone To Tell It To’s co-founders, Michael and Tom, were asked to lead the service.
In talking with her, Carol explained how she wanted and needed a service that spoke of God and love, grace, and peace. She believed in those gifts, valued them deeply. But she didn’t want an overbearing message about conversion or salvation with religious pieties and platitudes. That wasn’t her. It certainly wasn’t her son.
Carol’s wishes and her son’s memory were respected, to give her and her family the service they needed in the moment of their deepest pain.
In the three years since his passing, Someone To Tell It To has continued to meet with Carol, email and text her, support her, and be a presence in her life. Grief doesn’t stop after a memorial service. It doesn’t stop at a graveside. It only continues, and often intensifies as the harsh realities of loss sink in.
As the superintendent of a large school system, being able to live with her grief and express it safely and healthily, was vital, in order to continue doing her job effectively. Being supported in her grief enabled her to lead through her pain. The effects of her leadership and example touched the lives of hundreds of teachers and support staff, thousands of students, a wide-ranging and diverse community, and served as a model. The energy of her actions, like a stone thrown into a stilled pond, rippled throughout the entire school community.
She says, “Please know, you are the only people I’d refer my friends to in times of need.”
Someone To Tell It To says, “It is a sacred privilege, a sacred trust, to enter into another’s grief and sorrow to be there as the wounds begin to be bound and the pain continues to heal.”
Carol is like so many people in our world. She was alone, going through something unimaginably hard. We were there for Carol, and we continue to support her when she needs us. Carol’s not alone anymore.
“It may take months or years for a wish to come true, but it’s far more likely to happen when you care so much about a wish that you’ll do all you can to make it happen.” ~ Fred (Mr.) Rogers
With a new year approaching, it makes us reflect upon where we’ve been and where we’re going. We have a lot of wishes for next year.
We wish that people in our world would not feel lonely. We wish that no one would have to go through something difficult alone. We wish that we could lead a generation of people who choose to love people instead of hating one another because of how we seem different. We know those are some big wishes, and maybe we won’t see all of them come to fruition in 2020, but we’re going to do everything we can to see our wishes come true.
Someone To Tell It To has a very generous donor who is willing to donate a matching gift this year. We need your help – to meet and even exceed the matching gift amount so that we can continue walking through life with people like Carol and make an even better 2020.
We shared some of our wishes for next year. We have a lot more.
Thank you for your consideration, your generosity, and your support. With your help, someone To Tell It To’s wishes will come true.
Michael Gingerich & Tom Kaden
Due to a very generous donation from a friend and supporter of Someone to Tell It To, your gifts to enable others to be heard, unburdened, and to have more hope, can be doubled. Won’t you consider giving today – Giving Tuesday – or throughout the month of December to have your gifts matched?
Here are some ways your generosity can help others:
$15 sending encouraging mail (cost for 1 week)
$45 coffee for our Someones for a week
$100 listening support needs for the entire year (this is mostly parking and tolls for our listeners and those we listen to)
$150 1-hour compassionate listening session