She laughed at my jokes. She never forgot my birthday. Once a week, she made liver for me, even though she hated it. She made it anyway for me. She tied my ties. She told me she loved me. She never minded my cold feet. She made me laugh. She visited my mother. She listened to me. She was the one who always got the family together.

She always asked me how I was. She asked me how my day had been. She forgave me for not being perfect. She was always there. Our bed was never empty when she was there. She cared if I came home.

Now I am alone. I am lonely. I miss her. The house seems so empty. It doesn’t matter if or when I get home. I wake up alone. I go to bed alone. Even when I am with other people, I feel alone. I never imagined it would feel like this. I’m not even sure who I am anymore, without her. I never thought she would go first. I always thought it would be me. I just miss her so much.

Little things. Big things. Sometimes the little things are the big things, the things we miss the most… when the person we loved most has died.

Deb Kosmer

© 2012

Deb Kosmer

Deb has worked at Affinity Visiting Nurses Hospice for ten years, the first two as a hospice social worker and the last eight as Bereavement Support Coordinator supporting families before and after the death of their loved ones. She provides supportive counseling, developed and facilitates a variety of grief support groups, including a well-attended group for men only as well as other educational events. Deb received her Bachelor’s degree in Social Work from UW-Oshkosh and her Master’s degree in Social Work from UW Milwaukee. She received her certification in Thanatology through ADEC. Her writing has appeared in New Leaf Magazine, We Need Not Walk Alone, Living with Loss, Grief Digest, numerous hospice publications and EAP publications. Some of her poetry on death and dying will be included in a college textbook for social workers in end of life soon. New Leaf has also used some of her poetry for a line of sympathy and anniversary of death cards. On a personal level, Deb's 14-year-old son died after being struck by a car. Her 31-year-old sister had died in a car accident eight months earlier, and her 56-year-old father died from a heart attack exactly three years before. These three unexpected deaths within three years started Deb on a journey she never wanted to be on and she learned first-hand the importance of having the help and support of others. In the years since, she has experienced other losses, the most recent being the unexpected death of her 44-year-old step-daughter who died from complications three months after routine surgery. Deb's passions are writing, reading, education, nature, and family. She is currently working on a book of her grief poetry. She recently moved with her husband to Waypost Camp, Hatley WI. Her husband accepted a job there as Property Manager and his position allows them to live on-site with acres of woods and a lake. She anticipates the quiet beauty to be a strong catalyst for writing.

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