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Losing a Child: Always Andy's Mom

As a pediatrician, married mom of three biological children and one foster son, my life was busy, rushing off to my office four days a week, seeing patients for three and working as a medical director of a local physician organization for one. I balanced this with rushing off to shuttle my kids to after sports and other after school activities. All of this changed one day in August of 2018 when my 14 year old son, Andy, was killed in a car accident. I felt like my life was over, and in some ways it was over, and a new life was forced to begin in its place. 

Grief is seldom discussed openly in our culture, and the death of a child makes people feel even more uncomfortable. On this blog and podcast, ‘Losing a Child: Always Andy’s Mom’, the topic is approached openly and honestly, speaking to people who have lost loved ones and experts who help care for them. Whether you are a parent experiencing loss or someone who wants to support another going through this tragedy, this blog and podcast strives to offer hope and help.

May 7, 2020

Today, I have the privilege to talk with Roni Lambrecht, the delightful, award-winning author of the book, Parenting at Your Best Without Regrets. She lost her only child, 15 year old Dalton, in an ATV accident 6 years ago. She talks about Dalton, the amazing relationship the two of them had, and what life has been like for her and her husband after Dalton's death. 

In the months and years after the accident, Roni began to have a significant Facebook following. She found herself answering all sorts of questions online that people felt too afraid to ask other mourning parents. 'How are you really doing?' 'What are holidays like after losing your only child?' 'Can you be happy again?' Certainly, she didn't always know the answers to their questions, but she always answered then openly and honestly and people clearly appreciated this about her. Time and time again, she was encouraged to write a book with her thoughts.

Now, one might think that this would have resulted in a book about grief, but Roni and her husband really thought the most important thing that they could teach the general public is not how to mourn the death of one's child, but how to be a better parent to your living children. Roni's husband found himself suffering with so many regrets after Dalton died even though the majority of those regrets were completely unfounded. Roni's goal was, and is, to help parents appreciate every single day and every moment with their child. Don't worry about planning the perfect vacation. Instead, take time to dance in the kitchen while cooking dinner.

I know that you will love listening to Roni as much as I did. in fact, if you want to talk with us this Sunday, Mother's Day, I will be hosting a second virtual support group at 4pm Eastern Daylight Time. Send me an email at to get the invitation. Invite others as well. Mother's Day is so hard for grieving mothers. We all miss the child or children who are no longer here with us. Talking to others who understand help to take away a bit of that pain and help us remember that we are not alone. 

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