The glass crunches beneath my feet, thousands of tiny shards piercing my skin, leaving a trail of crimson footprints in my wake. I am running, racing for help, my two-year-old son in my arms, whimpering quietly. A woman sees me and screams, her face recoiling. I don’t know it at the time, I can’t feel … More Rivers of Glass
One year ago, a devastating explosion ripped through the city of Beirut, killing over 200 people, including my two-year-old son Isaac Oehlers, the youngest victim of the blast. Every night since that horrific day, I have gone through the same ritual. Climbing into bed, I cuddle one of Isaac’s favourite teddy bears close to me … More Justice for Isaac
Sometimes, the grief creeps its way up though my body until it reaches my chest. Suddenly, I feel like a hand wraps around my heart and crushes it with an almighty force. My throat closes and I can’t breathe.
This is what grief looks and feels like for me. … More Stages of Grief
When Isaac was just over four months old, he was baptised in the Catholic Church. I am not religious, but my husband Craig was raised Catholic and it was important to him and his family, so I agreed. Truth be told, despite my initial hesitation, it was a lovely day. We held the ceremony in … More The Speech
On 4 August 2020, I lived through something that defies comprehension – the Beirut explosion, which destroyed most of the city and took with it the life of my two-year-old son, Isaac. I can recall the moment when the scale of what we had lived through, and lost, in the Beirut explosion really started to dawn on … More The Losses That Define Me
Ever since I started writing about my grief for Isaac, the response has been overwhelming. I have been contacted by so many people showing support and sharing their own stories of loss. I also had the honour of being contacted by Melissa Fleming, the head of United Nations global communications. Melissa invited me to be … More Awake at Night
How do you continue to parent your child after they have died? One of the first things I noticed after the death of Isaac was the silence. The past two years had been filled with laughter, music and the occasional tantrum. Then all of a sudden, it was just so quiet… Isaac was an outgoing, … More Once a Mother, Always a Mother