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I had a good family life before my dad died. I vividly remembered my dad leading the family on hikes in picturesque forests and building intricate Lego automobiles with me. I remembered playing racing games with him and my little brother, taking turns to try to beat previous records. I remembered the pride I saw in my father’s eyes as I walked into Brayton Elementary School for the first time. In essence, Huan Yang was the epitome of a perfect father and mentor.
But nothing stays perfect. My dad lost to cancer in 2017 when I was in second grade and Yuchen was in kindergarten. Life changed dramatically after my dad’s death. Of course, Yuchen and I didn't comprehend what my father’s passing meant to true extent but the house just felt empty. I felt a mixture of sadness, numbness, and emptiness within me internally. As a naïve second grade kid, I didn’t know how to deal with these complex emotions, and felt lost. That was when my second grade teacher introduced the family to Good Grief
The Good Grief meetings had a very therapeutic and restorative effect. When all the families that have been affected by death held hands in a giant circle, I felt like I wasn’t the lone sufferer. When I ate pizza and did fun activities with kids my age, I felt happy. There was also a room in which the only residents were foam obstacles and balls which one could throw to release anger and frustration. Needless to say, Yuchen and I put that room to good use. After spending time at Good Grief, I realized I felt better mentally. I am so thankful for Good Grief for helping me process and effectively comprehend my dad’s death.
This is the fifth year since my father passed away in 2017. Last year, Semper Fi managed to raise 25,000 dollars for Good Grief. This year, Semper Fi is going to try to beat that record. So join us. Join us to help grieving kids and parents whose stories are similar to my own. Together, we can truly make a difference and help them.
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