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Parenting with a Story by Paul Smith

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FOURTEEN

Dealing with Loss

The most beautiful people I’ve known are those who have known trials, have known struggles, have known loss, and have found their way out of the depths.

—ELISABETH KÜBLER-ROSS

People lose things every day—a set of keys, a matching sock, or the homework they can’t find on their computer—all minor daily frustrations. Not the kind of loss most people need help dealing with. The kind we need help with is the kind of loss that stops your heart, the kind that forever alters the course of your life, that brings you to your knees, or that tries your soul. On October 20, 1991, that’s exactly what happened to a woman we’ll call Debbie.

Debbie was twenty-one years old and a senior at the University of California at Berkeley. ...

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