OCTOBER 12, 2006 – DEATH OF AN ADULT CHILD:? NATALIE SMITH-BLAKESLEE.? For more than ten years Natalie Smith-Blakeslee has connected parents with the children they have lost with her “Messages from the Light” She thought she understood what it was like for a parent to lose a child. She had no clue until her 27 year old daughter, Carrie, passed from leukemia on October 2, 2005. Just twelve short months after her daughter passing, she is driven to help other bereaved parents who endure the same loss through a website she made in memory of Carrie called “Healing Hearts Haven.”? http://www.healingheartshaven.com/ <http://www.healingheartshaven.com/>?

Natalie Smith-Blakeslee:? I think my faith and my knowledge in what I believe that Carrie is in heaven and the signs that I’ve gotten from her helped me get through the first year.

Natalie Smith-Blakeslee:? I remember picking my mother up from work and I mentioned Carrie’s name and my mom changed the subject.? Sometimes it’s very difficult for other family members because they don’t know how the bereaved mom will act or how my family thinks that I’ll react to all this.? Will it put me in tears and, oh gosh, what will they do next?? They don’t need to do anything.? It can be as emotional as you’re laughing one minute and crying the next or laughing or crying at the same time.

Natalie Smith-Blakeslee:? Keep busy.? Stay with someone or be with someone that understands the grief.?

Natalie Smith-Blakeslee:? If I start crying, my mom says, “You’re just not dealing with it,” or I’ve heard, “You need to be over it by now.”? … Well, that’s my way of dealing with it.

Natalie Smith-Blakeslee:? I know when I called my girlfriend.? We had gone through everything together.? We had our children within two months of each other.? We had been friends for 26 years.? When I called her and told her that there was no more hope for Carrie and that we were going to lose her, I called three times.? She never returned my phone call, and finally admitted at the funeral home, she said to me, “I was just afraid I was going to lose one of mine.”

Natalie Smith-Blakeslee:? It’s better to have somebody not say anything at all than say something false, fake, or something that doesn’t belong in character.

Natalie Smith-Blakeslee:? I’ve learned to be outspoken, but saying it in a nice way but getting my point across because I think the more if I hold it in inside, I’m just going to blow up and say something to the point where I wouldn’t want it to be to somebody who didn’t deserve it.? I think you can say something with respect to somebody and say, “Excuse me, but I think that hurts my feelings.? I know that hurt my feelings.”

Natalie Smith-Blakeslee:? To my daughter, Carrie.? I continue to miss you, my daughter.? But I smile with the knowledge that you are with me and I will see you one day when it is my time.? Mingle with the children whose mothers I have met because of you.? Help them to bring their moms and dads peace and messages, Carrie.? I love you.? Mom.


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