Saturday Morning Message: Treating Yourself

Author: Carol Lane

Carol's Garden

Good morning,

The idea for this week’s topic came from reading an article from the TAPS blog, "Redefining Self-Care in the Age of COVID-19," written by Grace Seamon-Lahiff. She not only showed how self-care has evolved over time, but offered some simple ways to accomplish it during this difficult time. For example, she wrote, “Is anxiety trying to tell you that only catastrophe is possible? Watch a dance video on YouTube to remind yourself that people are capable of passion and beauty. Go outside for a walk, not to escape from the anxiety, but to feel your beating heart and to notice that even in the midst of a pandemic, the trees are still blooming.” The opening picture of a lilac bush today comes from just such a walk I took around my garden.

Carol Lane
Mother of Bryon


Responses from Survivors to last week's question

What do you do to treat yourself?

From Rose, surviving spouse of Troy: It is hard, but I have to learn to take care of myself, because I have two children depending on me. When I'm sad and I need to talk to my husband, I write him a letter telling him how I feel and what my children and I did that day. I know he won't be able to read it, but it helps me to let out what I feel, because I used to tell him everything. I also read 30 minutes before I go to bed to help me relax. I look around in my room to look at his picture and listen to his voice on my cell phone. I also think about our good memories together and that helps me get through a night and day.

From Mary, surviving mother of Joshua: I started squeezing citrus fruits in the manual juicer each day. It gets some of the frustration out and replenishes my body with the nutrients it needs to be healthy. If we go out to eat a meal, I now automatically eat half and take the other half home for a meal the next day. I have been trying to find the things that I can control. I find going through my house and cleaning the cupboards and closets to be very therapeutic. I find items to take to a charity that are none of my son's things. Also, the sleep issue...When I can't deal with the grief anymore...that is the new clue to go to sleep. I tell myself that maybe then I will "see" Josh in my dreams.


Question for Next Week’s Saturday Morning Message 

The Saturday Morning Message was created so survivors can share questions and read how others respond. We would love to hear any questions you may have.  The question this week: Do you have an object, token or device that helps you relieve stress? How does it help you? You can share a picture if you like. 

Please email your questions or responses to, or reply to this email. It is best to send your response by Tuesday morning. Thank you to everyone responding this week and those who read this message.


♫ Song for the Week

From Rosemary, mother of Darrell, wrote, “When Darrell moved from California in the eighth grade to go live with his father in Hawaii, he would call me and sing this song to me. After joining the Army right out of high school and especially when he was deployed, he would randomly call me, in the middle of the night. He would say, "I just called to say I love you!" Then hang up on me. I couldn't call him back...then he would call later just to catch up. That kid!” This week’s song is, "I Just Called to Say I Love you" in honor of Darrell. 

One of our Peer Mentor, Andy, father of Danny, makes a free playlist on Spotify of the songs that appear in the Saturday Morning Messages along with a few other songs special to him. The playlist is called TAPS (Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors) Songs of Love and Remembrance.

You can send your favorite songs to and include a note about why the song is meaningful to you.


Share Your Thoughts

If you would like to send a message thanking one or all of those who participated in this week’s Saturday Morning Message, send it to and your thoughts will be passed along to them. You never know how your words may touch the heart of another.


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What have you done recently or what do you plan to do to take care of yourself?

Other Items and Events of Interest

Arlington Cemetery family at headstone

Join us on Memorial Day Weekend, May 28 to 30, for our 27th Annual National Military Survivor Seminar! We will be live streaming all of our general sessions with guest speakers.

Important Note: In-person registration is still open, but we are in a waitlist situation due to COVID occupancy restrictions in the State of Virginia. 

If you have any questions, email or call our Helpline at 202.588.TAPS (8277).

Learn More and Register


▶▶  Connect With Your TAPS Family 

You can discover all the opportunities to connect with your TAPS Family on our website at the TAPS Event Calendar.

About the Saturday Morning Message

The Saturday Morning Message (SMM) is a weekly communication contributed by survivors. The primary focus of the SMM is to foster peer-based connections for support and encouragement. It is the goal of this communication to foster a safe, supportive place where we can openly share in a nonjudgmental and caring manner. Read and contribute as you are comfortable. Content submitted for the SMM is edited for space considerations and may be used in other TAPS publications. The loving family at TAPS is available to you 24 hours a day. Please call 202-588-TAPS (8277).