Jennifer Cockrall-King | death
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Every year our whole family looks forward to summer at the lake. But, this year, there’s one crucial difference This spring, it will not be business as usual at the lake. My father, the man who built the cabin, took care of the landscaping, maintained and gassed up the boat, and stacked the firewood, succumbed to a merciless, unblinking cancer. His diagnosis to end-of-life was a matter of seven weeks. Our family closed ranks and held tight as we reeled in the wake of Dad’s death in December. Yet, in the space of a week, we managed to hold a funeral attended by hundreds, and I delivered the eulogy despite a quaking voice and buckling knees. On behalf of the family, I talked about the dad we loved so much. Most of the stories revolved around the sanctuary he’d created for our family at the lake. Afterwards, my mom, my brothers, and I thought about retreating to the place that had always been our refuge. The problem was that that refuge was loaded with memories of him. Already it felt like we’d been hit by an eighteen-wheeler of grief and emotion. Would going to the lake be too much to bear? The cabin is only...