“A third-degree burn to the soul.”
This is how my mom describes the pain of losing a son to suicide after revelations of clergy sexual abuse and a cover up from the Catholic Church. She’s a fierce advocate for survivors and their families, and I’m so proud of the impact she’s had. As our family lit the candle of hope this week of Advent, I knew I needed to interview my mom, especially after I experienced a fairly severe mental health recently. Hope has a distinct meaning to our family.
My mom was also a teacher for many, many years, and was happy to answer questions from former students. Growing up, I was known as “Mrs. Patterson’s daughter,” and that’s an honor I proudly carry.
There’s so much more to unpack here. Our family’s story is…a lot. But there’s a whole book in the works here.
Please listen, find out why “hope” is more than just a platitude.
And note how we’re laughing in this photo. “We have a warped sense of humor and that’s how we survive.” Indeed.