Honoring June 15th: To Those Who Have Lost Someone They Love

From Fear to Freedom
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When I look back on my life, there are three days that - if you add them all together - propelled me on the path I'm on now.

1. The day my daily nightmares stopped, after 14 years.
2. The day I dared to forgive my father, and my mother, on the 20th anniversary of their deaths.
3. And the day they died. That day destroyed all I knew, and it took me decades to receive the lessons, the goodness, and the grace from that day.

That day was June 15th.

And by noon, both my parents were both dead. I was 14 years old. And I saw it all.

Life was not kind to me afterward. (Maybe it wasn't because I wasn't kind to myself. More on that later.) Because of the struggles and the triumphs - and all the gifts that day has given me - I honor June 15th every year.

I've gone from scrounging for dimes in the back seat of a friend's car (there were years I didn't even own a car and I was living in Los Angeles) to running a global company, from sleeping anywhere I could lay my head to traveling the world in comfort, from believing I was never going to be good enough to know I am more than enough.

Rhonda's mother

I honor June 15th to remember my journey, my parents, and what's possible.

I honor June 15th because my father killed my mother because he was afraid of living without her, and by dissecting his fear (and mine), I now coach people to no longer be afraid so they can speak up, be seen, and feel empowered.

I honor June 15th because, until my mother's last breath, she was trying to be brave and live true to herself, and because of her courage, I'm inspired daily to show others how to be brave so they can live the life their soul intended.

To all those who have lost someone they love...

sunset over the sea and a birds

For my mother...

It never goes away.
The ache in your heart.
The wish that she was still with you.
The hope that you will never forget that last hug, or kiss, or conversation. (Or her coffee mug on the kitchen table.)
You pray that you remember everything or anything
You worry when your memory begins to fade...

You don't want to lose her. Not ever.

Some days you find yourself wailing for no reason.
And then you remember...oh yes, you're crying because you could use your mom's reassurance, laughter, or smile right now.
You'd do anything to talk to her one. more. time.

Some days you think of her and smile so big because you know you were one of the lucky ones to spend any time with her.

Gratitude. So much gratitude.

You rub your mantra beads and pray to her.
You pray that she sees you from the other side.
Was that her presence you just felt?
Is her Spirit helping, guiding, supporting you even now?
You say yes because you can't bear it if the answer is no.

It never goes away.
The ache in your heart.
The wish that she was still with you.
No matter how old you get.
No matter how long it's been.
It never goes away.

To my mother, Ena Charm Wiitanen, who died on June 15th at the hands of her husband when I was only 14 years old.

Every day I miss you.
I hope I never stop missing you.
I hope I never get too old or your memory fades too much.
I don't want to let go.

I love you,
Rhonda

From Fear to Freedom
From Fear to Freedom GUIDE topaz enhance sharpen hiresDOWNLOAD GUIDE

When I look back on my life, there are three days that - if you add them all together - propelled me on the path I'm on now.

1. The day my daily nightmares stopped, after 14 years.
2. The day I dared to forgive my father, and my mother, on the 20th anniversary of their deaths.
3. And the day they died. That day destroyed all I knew, and it took me decades to receive the lessons, the goodness, and the grace from that day.

That day was June 15th.

And by noon, both my parents were both dead. I was 14 years old. And I saw it all.

Life was not kind to me afterward. (Maybe it wasn't because I wasn't kind to myself. More on that later.) Because of the struggles and the triumphs - and all the gifts that day has given me - I honor June 15th every year.

I've gone from scrounging for dimes in the back seat of a friend's car (there were years I didn't even own a car and I was living in Los Angeles) to running a global company, from sleeping anywhere I could lay my head to traveling the world in comfort, from believing I was never going to be good enough to know I am more than enough.

Rhonda's mother

I honor June 15th to remember my journey, my parents, and what's possible.

I honor June 15th because my father killed my mother because he was afraid of living without her, and by dissecting his fear (and mine), I now coach people to no longer be afraid so they can speak up, be seen, and feel empowered.

I honor June 15th because, until my mother's last breath, she was trying to be brave and live true to herself, and because of her courage, I'm inspired daily to show others how to be brave so they can live the life their soul intended.

To all those who have lost someone they love...

sunset over the sea and a birds

For my mother...

It never goes away.
The ache in your heart.
The wish that she was still with you.
The hope that you will never forget that last hug, or kiss, or conversation. (Or her coffee mug on the kitchen table.)
You pray that you remember everything or anything
You worry when your memory begins to fade...

You don't want to lose her. Not ever.

Some days you find yourself wailing for no reason.
And then you remember...oh yes, you're crying because you could use your mom's reassurance, laughter, or smile right now.
You'd do anything to talk to her one. more. time.

Some days you think of her and smile so big because you know you were one of the lucky ones to spend any time with her.

Gratitude. So much gratitude.

You rub your mantra beads and pray to her.
You pray that she sees you from the other side.
Was that her presence you just felt?
Is her Spirit helping, guiding, supporting you even now?
You say yes because you can't bear it if the answer is no.

It never goes away.
The ache in your heart.
The wish that she was still with you.
No matter how old you get.
No matter how long it's been.
It never goes away.

To my mother, Ena Charm Wiitanen, who died on June 15th at the hands of her husband when I was only 14 years old.

Every day I miss you.
I hope I never stop missing you.
I hope I never get too old or your memory fades too much.
I don't want to let go.

I love you,
Rhonda

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