Monday, June 24, 2013

Letters to Nora - Nora's Letter to Me

I did an exercise a few weeks ago called "left handed writing" (or with your non-dominant hand). I had been contemplating doing this exercise since I read about it in On Grief and Grieving, by Elisabeth Kubler-Ross and David Kessler which I read in the early months after Nora's death.

So, one night, when I couldn't sleep I went into her nursery and sat on the ground with my blanket and pillow and took out a piece of paper and pen.  With the lights off, as not to wake my husband, I laid on my belly and rested my hand on the paper with the pen, waiting, for who knows what.

I then started talking to Nora in my mind.  I said I missed her.  I asked why she had to leave.  I told her I loved her and that I was in a lot of pain.  I said that I was ready now to receive her answers.  Ready for anything to happen.

Well, what happened is I started crying. Sobbing.  Wailing.  And I started to write.  It was her voice in my mind answering my questions, and part of me knew it was mine too.  But I kept writing.  I did not look at what I was writing, I couldn't, as it was dark.  I didn't take care with having it straight or legible.  I just wrote  the words coming to my mind. 

That night, when I was done writing, I crawled back into bed with my husband.  I did not turn on the lights.  I didn't read what I had wrote.  I left the pen and paper on the floor in her room for another day, a different time.  Besides, I figured what I had wrote was just all my thoughts and words anyways.

As the week went on, I walked by her room and saw the paper with scribbles on it laying on the floor.  I made no effort to revisit it.  I thought the exercise was pointless.  I figured it was my words coming through on the paper.  After all the thoughts were in my head.

Then about a week later, on Sunday evening, which happened to be Mother's Day, I went back into her room and looked at the four white pages sitting there.  The paper was full of scribbles and most of it was illegible, but I sat down and read it.  And below is what I could make out:

Dear Mom,

I miss you too. I love you, but I had to go.  I was never meant to stay.  You don't need to save me as I didn't need to be saved.  Please let me go mom.  Let the pain go.  You are a good mom.  This is why I chose you.  You held me my whole life.  I never felt any pain mom.  I am only loved.  I am love. I am happy mom, this is because I know you. 

Mommy, I feel your love.


Well, the last two lines, "Mommy, I feel your love. & Nora" are what I wanted her to say to me.  But the rest of it is what I could read from my scrawls.  The whole experience was mind-blowing.  I know that some of those things were not my thoughts when I was writing it and some of them were.  Then again, maybe I have to admit, I really can't remember what I wrote on the paper as it had been a week ago already.

Who knows if I was really receiving a message from Nora or if it was just my own mind, writing down what I hoped to hear her say.  But, I have to admit.  It made me feel better.  It makes me feel like we had a connection that night, even if the connection was just me trying to find a way to forgive myself.

If you need more healing experiences or ways to connect with your deceased child.  I suggest trying the exercise.  Even if you know it's probably your own mind answering your questions, it still can be a healing experience. It's an opportunity to give yourself more permission to grieve, to connect, to heal.  Even if it's just with yourself.

And who knows, maybe, just maybe, it was Nora.

But, I guess I will never really know.


  1. Oh Lindsey, this is so powerful! I'm crying...again, what a gift this experience is :) Sending you love -Tara

  2. Lindsey- to agree with the above comment - this is sooo powerful.

    I think it is profoundly healing to know that Nora CHOSE you...chose you to hold her for her life. There was purpose in are her perfect mother and she, your perfect daughter. I am so grateful you were brave enough to share this part of your journey. I have NO doubt that was Nora. She spoke through you/to you and you were open enough to hear her. That's truly beautiful.

    I just did a similar exercise 3+ years later after my losses, and I can relate to how healing this exercise can be. I hadn't realized how much I was still holding...and it finally allowed me to let more go...always a journey.



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