Losses overwhelm, destabilize, frenzy nerves. In their wake, it takes daunting courage to inch toward fresh integration, moment by moment. Especially is this true of parents losing adult children, faced with imagining life without their rubbing-elbows-presence.

One mother has done precisely that, a seasoned woman with knowing hands: a professional potter, a medical massage therapist, a gardener. After learning of her forty-eight-year-old son’s unexpected death, she picked up her pen and began journaling; her paints to create mandalas corresponding to the cycles of grief ambushing her; her clay to fashion a series of fourteen ceramic vessels, entitled Inner Spaces in memory of her Kurt; her tools to nurture perennials and annuals enlivening her home—all washed within days of tears she allowed to flow, unencumbered.

Her inner wisdom, centered in her solar plexus, has guided her through two years of intense enduring, remembering, holding, and letting go. She has emerged from the fire with a story to share. New merriment crinkles her soulful eyes as she forges head with fresh spirit, not without being ambushed by grief, lessening over time.

Her name is Nancy Kibens. (dancingcoyote@att.net)




Fortunately for us, she has self-published her journal with corresponding art work, An Unfinished Life – a Mother’s Grief. The profits from its sale will be donated to the Kurt Kibens Scholarship Fund at Cordon Bleu Culinary Institute in St. Peters, Missouri, where Kurt trained.


And even more fortunate for some of us was experiencing Nancy’s earthy Mother’s/Woman’s heart as she shared her story at the C. G. Jung Society of St. Louis. We will not forget.