Good grief

In Notes for the Ever­lost, Kate Inglis doesn’t con­front death: She fig­ures out how to live with its un­slayable pres­ence.

The Coast - - ARTS - BY STEPHANIE DOMET

and hope—re­mained a con­stant through the next weeks, as Liam un­der­went heart surgery and brain surgery while Ben thrived, through Liam’s death at six weeks, and into the yawn­ing chasm of months and years af­ter­ward, as Inglis raised her tod­dler, Evan, and new­born Ben, while griev­ing Liam’s loss and fig­ur­ing out how to live in the strange new coun­try of be­reave­ment.

Inglis founded Glow in the Woods in 2008, an on­line com­mu­nity for “baby­lost fa­thers and moth­ers.” At the time, she says, there re­ally wasn’t any­thing on­line that wasn’t re­li­gious—and none of that res­onated with her. She wanted a place to do the deep work of griev­ing and go­ing on. “When it dawns on you that there are other peo­ple, and you can fig­ure out how to find them, it’s your first full deep breath,” she says. “That is how it feels to share space with some­one who has lost an in­fant, held a dead baby in their arms.”

Inglis ac­knowl­edges most peo­ple re­coil from the phrase “dead baby,” but that, she’d ar­gue, is why Glow in the Woods, Notes for the Ever­lost and her up­com­ing sa­lon are so vi­tal.

“Peo­ple say there’s no wrong way to do grief. And I have a ‘Yeah, but...’” she says. “You gotta do it, you can’t fight or flight from it. That dragon is liv­ing in­side you now, blow­ing fire. It’s use­less to pre­tend that dragon isn’t there. You have to fig­ure out how to live with your grief, talk to it, feed it and water it. Keep the stall clean so it can take care of it­self, very much like a farmer tends to a cow. It’s a big job and a lot of it is shov­el­ling shit.”

The job is made eas­ier, she knows, by shar­ing the shov­el­ling. “Help­ing soothe some­one who is only a year into it is not just a way of help­ing that other per­son, it soothes my beast as well. It’s an­i­mal hus­bandry not only for your dragon, but mine too.”

gain ground that Al­lied gen­er­als knew the Ger­mans would be va­cat­ing days, or even hours, later.” Among the many vic­tims, he points out, were the sol­diers

SUB­MIT­TED

An evening with author and pho­tog­ra­pher Kate Inglis .

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