Erin's Journals

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Just a thought… Write what you love. Love will hold you through the hard times and hold the world during the good times. [Mark Z. Danielewski]

April Fool’s?!? I can’t even go there. Not today, pranksters, not today.

Instead, what I’ll do is give you a link to a new piece I wrote for Silken Laumann’s inspirational website. What’s the four-time Olympian rower been up to? Here’s a piece from a news release that came out just over a year ago:

“Silken Laumann reveals UNSINKABLE, a story-sharing platform to empower Canadians to walk the talk when it comes to mental health. UNSINKABLE will host stories of courage, resiliency, transformation and the strategies behind the success. Canadians can expect stories from everyday Canadians, well-known Canadians, Canadian youth and Canadian health experts. 

Four-time Olympian, Silken Laumann reveals the official launch date of Unsinkable – a storytelling platform for Canadians to share stories that will empower other Canadians to greatness. (CNW Group/UNSINKABLE)

“Motivated by her own personal struggles and eventual triumph to greatness, Laumann dreamed of connecting and inspiring people through personal experiences on a large digital scale. The dialogue around mental health has shifted significantly since the launch of Bell Let’s Talk and UNSINKABLE will give Canadians strategies they can apply to everyday life.” You can visit to dive in.

I was approached by Silken’s team to write a piece for them based on my book Mourning Has Broken: Love, Loss and Reclaiming Joy (HarperCollins Canada). What I came up with was the importance of remembering the person who’s gone – and how important it is to those of us left behind that her or his name is not forgotten. On her birthday. On the day of her passing. The big red-letter days in our lives that pass by so easily for everyone else.

I get it. Life has gone on, the world has kept turning. But this piece emphasizes how much it means when those we love remember the one we loved most of all.

The timing of the story’s release March 22 was chosen by the Unsinkable folks and was meant to coincide with the release of my book in softcover; it also came out just a few days before what should have been Lauren’s 29th birthday. As it is, this day marks three years since my sister’s son, my nephew Michael, died in a house explosion in Kelowna. To date, there’s been no progress in the arson/murder case that we’ve been made aware of, and as always we send my little sister love and strength.

But this is also a happy day: today Lauren’s (and now Brooke’s) husband Phil celebrates his birthday and we send him more love than Canada Post can carry. He’s a beautiful example of how to reclaim joy and Rob and I are immensely proud of this man and the loving, lovely family that embraces him today in Ottawa.

Here’s the story and thank you for sharing in our journey. Have a gentle day and I’ll be back with you tomorrow.

Rob WhiteheadWednesday, April 1, 2020