A loss in the family

My father Lucio recently past away at the age of 80 years old. He had to fight his way at the end in the battle of ATC cancer [Anaplastic Thyroid Carcinoma]. A very deadly and rapid acting cancer. My dad was able to survive triple heart bypass more than 20 years ago but lost his battle to ATC cancer. My dad was my mentor, my friend, my solitude, the biggest pillar in my life.
This is the first death in our family and the first time my son was able to experience one. I guess both my 3 year old son Andre and I both experience a family loss at the same time. I have tried my best to be strong for the family and for my son. During one of the days of my father’s wake, my son cried to me saying he missed his Lolo Lucio (Grandfather Lucio) so much. To comfort him, I told him “it’s okay to cry it out”. His Lolo (Grandpa) is physically dead but his spirit is wandering around and would be looking after us.
Surprisingly my son Andre was able to comprehend death as one morning during my father’s waked, I ask him if he had said good morning to his Lolo (Grandpa). It was surprising for me to hear my 3yr old son telling me “but mommy, Lolo is already dead”. Although he took my question literally, he understood that his Lolo will not be able to answer him back good morning. I hope someday I would be able to explain more to my son about death and afterlife. I know he is too young to understand for now as most often he takes things literally… but someday, I’ll pray God would give me the wisdom, knowledge, wit and heart to be able to explain to my son death and afterlife as I too would be in that path.
If you have suggestions and comments, please feel free to send to me. Thank you.


  1. Andre is really smart and intelligent.... you are blessed to have him. God bless!

  2. Anonymous17/7/12 12:56

    Lea, thanks for sharing. Grief is such a personal experience and sadly no one is immune to it. First off, I am so sorry to hear about your loss. Your dad is in a better place now. As for us left here, we continue our continue our journey and try to remember and celebrate the lives of those who have passed on.

    My son Josh understood early on that physical death is the end. He was about 4 years old. One day, I found him looking out the window, staring at nothing, deep in thought. I came over and held him and he said, "mommy, I don't want to die". "Why do we have to die?" "Will I see you ever again?" "Will we recognize each other?" From the first two questions, you could tell that he has a grasp of what the physical death would be. As for the other two, well, I don't have the answers. But I looked him straight in the eye and said, "yes, we will see each other". Why did I say that? It's because I want that so very much too. Then I hugged him tight until he felt better. I feel so bad because I thought it wasn't fair for him to have such thoughts and I couldn't take it away. Like you, maybe someday, we could talk to them more about it. MT

    1. Hi MT,

      Thank you for sharing. It shed some light to me on how a child think of someone close to them passing. It is part of life's mystery that we will be looking for answers or clarification but then I guess we only have to found out when we get to that point in our life.