Grieving for Our Little Girl Lost:
When Proms, Graduation,
and College Fade Away
When someone dies, it's logical to grieve, sometimes for extended periods. Although the adrenaline of constant worry over the past three years has provided enough energy to keep me going physically during Ellen's crises, there are times when I feel devastated by sorrow for the losses accumulating in her life. I mourn for the proms she won't attend, the parties with girlfriends she's missed, and the graduation with her class she won't be part of.
My husband says: "She can always go to college," but that isn't what really bothers me. She has missed many experiences her high‐ school years could have provided and won't get the chance to relive them no matter what happens.
"She'll get back on track," friends tell me, but I wonder. With all she has gone through, can she ever find a place in life where she will feel comfortable and accepted?
Sometimes my grief over Ellen mixes in with worry and hurt and guilt, and sometimes it's as acute as if she were lost to me forever. Although several mothers of daughters without apparent problems wrote and told me they still worried something might go wrong, I