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What losing Kenzie taught me


What losing Kenzie taught me name

It's coming up for 12 years since my gorgeous girl gained her angel wings and the course of my life, and Conor's changed forever.

Our lives have been irrevocably changed by the events of 2005; the big C and for me, losing a daughter, and for Conor, losing a sister.

Conor kept me going through the rawness of grief after Kenzie died. In my mind I was so determined not to let those events ruin his childhood and negatively impact on the man he was going to become.

For children, losing a sibling or parent in childhood is something they should not have to face. But they do. It is estimated 1 in 20 children will experience the death of a parent or sibling before they are 16.

I am passionate in giving hope when faced with the toughest of life's challenges and that every child should get the help they need so they can go on to have a bright future. With the right support at the right time, they can face the future with confidence.

Conor and I talked openly about Kenzie, cancer and death. As he got older and developed a more in depth understanding of the circle of life and the process of death, he would often ask me questions about it and we always spoke about it in language he could understand. 

I also ensured we stayed in the local community so Conor would develop a sense of place, community and belonging in the world. Our community has been exceptionally supportive and kind throughout the years and we definitely wouldn't be where we are today without the kindness shown to us by many.

In our way, Kenzie's Gift is paying that kindness forward to others, continually gifting hope to others facing serious illness or bereavement.

It is a tough journey, at times it can feel like hell and life can't possibly go on. But it can.

Life becomes easier, you get to a point where you can function again, laugh again and enjoy the pleasures and treasures that life gives.

I've been fortunate to watch Conor grow up, to see how his sister has influenced his life in a positive way. For me, she has gifted a perspective of what is important in life and to be true to myself.

 

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