Tomorrow, it will be six years since my beautiful son, Rob passed away. I write him a letter each year. It helps me to process his death, and I pray that somehow he is able to receive it. I hope that it can also help others who might be experiencing the same pain.
Robert Mason Lofink 02/21/96 – 09/14/14
I can still hear the screams coming from Meaghan and Leah. I can still see myself standing in your doorway, looking at your lifeless body. I was paralyzed by shock, yet propelled by the need to flee. I can still feel the tiny bit of hope as the paramedics worked on you. I can still see your father acknowledging to me that you were gone; worst feeling of my life. I remember the moment that I sat on our front lawn and was introduced to the world of before and after. It was the moment I knew that life would never be the same. And… I remember the moment that I sat at the picnic table, at the tot lot, and that beautiful breeze ran through my entire body. These are all of the painful and profound moments that gave birth to my new life.
I find myself unprepared this year. I usually have an idea, a goal or a plan to help me to get through another year without you. This year, I feel stuck in my grief and in my sadness. I want to scream that I have learned my lesson, that I have been punished long enough and that you can come back now. I also want to scream and tell you how angry that I am with you because you left me, and everything I knew to be true no longer exists. Rob, there are times that I am so exhausted from carrying around my grief, knowing it will be my constant companion for the rest of my life.
This past year has been filled with some growing pains that have enabled me to learn a lot about myself, and they have forced me to make some difficult decisions recently. In the end, I know that I will be thankful for the gifts, lessons and growth that will be waiting for me on the other side of this pain.
Of course, I will turn all of these thoughts and feelings into the drive and the power that I need for me to keep putting one foot in front of the other because I am as stubborn as you were, and I refuse to quit.
Robert, six years ago I lost everything that I knew to be true and simultaneously I found purpose, and in your death, a plan was born…
Rising Above Addiction continues to grow and is evolving into more than I could have ever imagined. I have developed strong relationships with treatment centers, which has enabled me to get people straight into treatment! You continue to help so many people, and you continue to change lives. However, I have also seen so much that needs to change in our hospitals and in our health care system as a whole. No one should ever fall through the cracks, and we have lost too many lives to this breakdown.
Last December, we opened Keeping My Serenity, then COVID hit, and then I lost someone who is very dear to me and has been by my side from the beginning. She taught me so much about sober living, recovery and even how to be tough. She has also taught me that no one is immune to relapse, no matter how strong his/her recovery is. I love her, I miss her and I am right here as soon as she’s ready. I will help her to learn survival. All of this made me question the decision to open the second home, but as always, so much beauty has resulted from the struggle. I am close with all of the girls, and the sober homes are moving and growing in a positive direction. I am very excited to add group therapy to the houses. We are working with two therapists, who will come in twice a month and provide healing, new perspectives, and tools that will hopefully add growth and stability to the girls’ recoveries.
I wrote a book; a lifelong dream! It was my birthday present to you. I am so grateful for all of the positive feedback that I have received. I wanted this book to help people heal, help people to find purpose and to help people feel hope that they can survive the darkest of circumstances. The best part is, every book that is sold goes towards helping people.
Today, I find hope through Rising Above Addiction, Reclaiming My Life and Keeping My Serenity. I find purpose through helping others, and I find faith in the bigger plan that you continue to lead me on every day.
I love you so much Rob. I miss you more today than I did yesterday, and I will miss you more tomorrow than I do today.
And… let’s be real… neither one of us would have made it out alive, being trapped in the house together, through COVID.
For You, Because of You and in Memory of You