ashes

‘If you do this, Kara, you will not be able to undo it. It will be permanent, forever.’: Woman writes letter after cousin’s suicide, ‘You must not know the impact it’s going to have on the rest of us’

“If you do this, Kara, my daughter is going to ask me if she is going to die, too. I reply, ‘Everyone does die eventually.’ She is going to ask me if she will die soon or when she is bigger. I will have to admit mommies don’t actually know everything. If you do this, everyone who loves you will have their own heartbreaking story to tell about how they must now go on without you.”

‘I carried his ashes. I carried them in a box all over the airport. I didn’t want to put him on the floor. It didn’t feel right.’: Woman’s journey to return her husband’s ashes to his home

“Before we boarded our plane in Atlanta, I took his remains to the exact spot we touched when he flew into Atlanta. I laid the box down on the exact tile we stood on. The captain came by to give his condolences and let us know that he was honored to take him home and that we would get him there as fast as possible. I couldn’t even squeak out a word when he came by. I just nodded and cried.”

‘Would I get more male attention?’ I worried how it would look. Would I feel ashamed?’: Widow removes wedding ring after husband’s death, ‘He is with me. Nothing will ever change that.’

“I silently made the decision to remove my ring. I worried about being seen as a single mother, a single woman. ‘Would I feel judged? Would they think differently of me?’ I wasn’t ‘over it.’ But I was going out with girlfriends for girl’s night. It wasn’t that I was looking to meet someone. But as I awoke that next morning, I couldn’t help but feel paralyzed by sadness.”

‘He was out at a restaurant with my brother. The next morning, my entire life was over. ‘Caroline. He’s not breathing.’ I snapped back, ‘What are you talking about?’: Widow learns to grieve with her daughters after husband unexpectedly ‘died in his sleep’

“Someone I love dearly timidly asked, ‘Did he do those things regularly?’ I considered keeping his secret. I chose not to disclose WHY he died. I told people, tight-lipped, ‘He died in his sleep.’ I held onto the shame and guilt. ‘I’ll do this for you,’ I thought.”

‘My dad wanted to be cremated. Then he died, and I didn’t know how badly those ashes would haunt me.’: Daughter ‘appalled’ by father’s ashes, keeps them ‘hidden away’ in plastic bag

“The idea crumbled me. Knowing he was at the crematory, and knowing it’d be his turn. Was I eating lunch when they loaded his body in? Was I nursing my twins? Even talking about this is so shameful. His ashes sit in a cupboard. I know they’re there. But I don’t want to see them.”

For our best love stories, subscribe to our free email newsletter: