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12-Year-Old Girl Dies by Suicide After Being Relentlessly Bullied and Harassed at School

After facing relentless bullying and harassment over the past school year, 12-year-old Flora Martinez ended her life on May 7. Now, her parents are demanding change from schools and administrators after the bullying persisted, even once she was gone.

One Year After 26-Year-Old Wife Dies of Cancer, Husband Finds Redeeming Love After Loss With Young Widow

After his wife Maddy died of cancer at just 26 years old, Chandler David Smith was left grieving an unimaginable loss and navigating what it looked like to be a single dad. In his grief, he found new and beautiful love with a young widow and mother of three.

Florida ‘Safe Haven’ Baby Graduates High School, Reunites With Firefighters Who Received Her 18 Years Ago

Eighteen years ago, when she was just one day old, a baby named Colleen was surrendered at a “Safe Haven” box in Clermont, Florida. Now, as she successfully graduates high school, Colleen is reuniting with the firefighters who were with her on that fateful day 18 years ago.

Who Has a Meltdown — on Vacation?? Uh, This Girl.

On our most recent family vacation, I had a mom meltdown.
The trigger was an activity we really wanted to do that didn’t work out (and didn’t work out in an unnerving, unsettling way).
But that wasn’t the actual reason for my meltdown.

It wasn’t the kids, the packing, or the lack of sleep that triggered my vacation meltdown

The real reason was something my poor family did not understand, though they tried, bless them. It’s something I’m pretty sure only moms of big kids (or pre-big kids) can really understand: that the older your children get, the more time together takes on epic significance because you know just how much it took to get to that place and you don’t know when you all might find your way back there again.
Gathering an entire family (which may include teens and young adults) for any extended length of time is a feat of scheduling, negotiation, and preference management. International treaties have been worked out in fewer steps. The sheer number of details that have to line up is mind-boggling.
The same goes for multigenerational family dinners and holidays and other moments whose casts include older kids who have other things to do (have to do, want to do) and other people to do them with or for (bosses, friends, coaches, teammates, significant others).

If only we could freeze time

So as moms, when we look at our people all together at a table or sprawled on couches or posing in front of some scenic backdrop for an obligatory family photo, we think we never know when or if we’ll see them just this way again.
We see days past and envision them spilling over into the present and future.
We see the relational house that love and time built and imagine adding onto it.
So when something interrupts this scene or chips away at it, we freak out a little (or a lot).
We do this for the same baseline reason we do everything as moms: WE LOVE OUR PEOPLE.
We love spending time with them. We love watching them interact with each other. We love hearing them laugh together. We love seeing who they’ve become…and who they’re becoming.
And so, dear spouses and teenagers and adult children of the world, if the mom of your family gets a little meltdowny when all you’re trying to do is sightsee or play a game or eat a meal together, please try to understand what that “together” represents to her.
You will tell her, kindly and with the most reassuring of intentions, that it doesn’t matter if everything doesn’t work out.
But you see, it matters to her, because YOU matter to her. If she’s falling apart, it’s because she wants so much to hold you all together.
This originally appeared on Guilty Chocoholic Mama‘s Facebook group and is used here by permission.
Elizabeth Spencer
Elizabeth Spencer
Elizabeth Spencer is mom to two daughters (one teen and one young adult) who regularly dispense love, affection, and brutally honest fashion advice. She writes about faith, food, and family (with some occasional funny thrown in) at Guilty Chocoholic Mama and avoids working on her 100-year-old farmhouse by spending time on Facebook and Twitter.

12-Year-Old Girl Dies by Suicide After Being Relentlessly Bullied and Harassed at School

After facing relentless bullying and harassment over the past school year, 12-year-old Flora Martinez ended her life on May 7. Now, her parents are demanding change from schools and administrators after the bullying persisted, even once she was gone.

One Year After 26-Year-Old Wife Dies of Cancer, Husband Finds Redeeming Love After Loss With Young Widow

After his wife Maddy died of cancer at just 26 years old, Chandler David Smith was left grieving an unimaginable loss and navigating what it looked like to be a single dad. In his grief, he found new and beautiful love with a young widow and mother of three.

Florida ‘Safe Haven’ Baby Graduates High School, Reunites With Firefighters Who Received Her 18 Years Ago

Eighteen years ago, when she was just one day old, a baby named Colleen was surrendered at a “Safe Haven” box in Clermont, Florida. Now, as she successfully graduates high school, Colleen is reuniting with the firefighters who were with her on that fateful day 18 years ago.