The official hugger


After Marshall passed away, I use to say “I wish I could be the official hugger of people going through this”.  I wished there was some kind of way to instantly transport me to families, so I could just hold them after the loss of a child.  I didn’t know what I would say but I knew that in these situations sometimes a quiet embrace from someone who has been through it could shed a ray of light and comfort in a very dark time.  I didn’t know how or when I could make it happen but it was something that never left my mind. 

 Over the years, this calling continued to grow and present itself in my life.  I have watched family, friends, colleagues and strangers go through this unimaginable loss.  My heart has ached for them and with them.  My arms have held them and our paths have connected in ways we would have never wished or known.  I have learned from these families and been inspired by their strength and courage. 

I have to pause and smile for a moment when I think of Carry You With Me, the community and the storybook.  It is just the beginning, but I recently realized that in a small way I am now getting the chance to give families a hug through my thoughts and words.  I may not be able to physically reach out and hug everyone but I can begin to connect on some level that matters.  I write to heal, I write to connect and I write to let you know I care. 

Sending a hug out to all of you who could use an extra one today. 

XO Alanna