I will admit, two family members dying from overdoses within 18 hours of one another was about as soul crushing as it can get. We all packed up last weekend and headed out of state on a camping trip and to visit with a dear friend. I think getting away from everything at least helped us get over the shock and begin to process what has happened, and what is happening to thousands of people every day.

As for the rest of it, it’s trials and tribulations of life. It’s like I tell my kids all the time, bad shit happens, we make mistakes and some days we’re just not at our best but we need it to be this way because it’s the only way to learn and grow to be the best versions of ourselves we can be.

Thank you for reading. Sorry I caused you tears!… and I bet my mother in-law knew what we were doing. She raised five children. I’d assume she has every trick figured out by now.

Newspaper reporter in Eastern Iowa. The views expressed are mine alone.

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