Welcome to my Blog.
My name is Crispina ffrench, I am a founder of the used-clothing recycling craft genre, a life long screen printer, outdoor enthusiast, wife, friend, coach and mom to two tweenage daughters and an adult son.
I’ve been processing. Traveling through some super darkness and fogginess these last two months.
See, my son died on July 30. I guess we had an unusual connection. We spent a ton of time together, not only was he one of my favorite humans, he was diagnosed at the age of two with a cardio-myopathy. We were told that he would likely live for about 18 months. He was 26 when he died.
The most common ‘symptom’ of Ben’s heart condition was sudden death so we all knew the day would come.
When he was diagnosed we were sent home from the cardio ICU at Boston Childrens’ Hospital on seven doses of medication a day. One of Ben’s meds was a compound our locally owned pharmacy made for him. It was a liquid that had to be refrigerated. There were three kinds of medication – all liquid that were administered by oral syringe either twice or three times a day (digoxin and Lasix twice daily 12 hrs apart and refrigerated Captopril 3X daily). I went to nearly every medical appointment he had from diagnosis until the end of his life when he endured an evaluation for a heart and double lung transplant.
The evaluation process was super intense and he really wasn’t feeling well at the end, although he played an awesome gig at The Sand Castle Festival on Revere Beach three days before he died. He texted me a photo from sound check to say “this does not suck”. He was having a blast.
Ben was focused, motivated, driven and loads of fun. He had a great sense of humor and loved adventure. We traveled together - Cuba, Nashville, all around Ireland, Glasgow, we were talking about Puerto Rico this winter.
He was a professional musician, a guitarist. He played in wedding bands with Silver Arrow and was bandleader of The Lost Collective. He called himself Band Mom for that 12 piece hip-hop passion project, scheduling practice session and pushing for recordings and video documentation of their notable sound.
Ben saved my life.
When he was born I was living in an abusive relationship. I had zero experience with any sort of counseling or therapy and my track record with the men I chose for relationships was not stellar. It took me becoming a parent to see that I was not able to fix my partner but I could make Ben’s and my situation better by leaving the relationship. Ben taught me that life is better without fear, rage, and unreasonable conflict. I think he taught his dad the same thing.
We were tight, Ben and me, and I miss him. I miss the fun we had together.
At the same time I know that he lived a full life in a really short time. I know that each day we shared was a true blessing, a gift from the universe. I know that the very last thing Ben would want me doing is feeling the stagnation and prolonged sense of deep grief I have been processing. Ben had real solid integrity. I know that Ben wants me to hold the blessings we shared close. Together we focused on all the magical things we learned together; to put your self first and take really good care of yourself so you can do what you want and take care of those in need. To have fun everyday cause you don’t know how many days you got. To get clear on what you want in your life and go get it
I have this deep desire to make global impact toward environmental healing, but before I do that I choose to focus my attention on self care, on healing and on finding comfort with the new normal that is my reality in the wake of Ben’s passing.
You are inspiring me to share this new path. I am interested in shaking-up our cultural norm of holding deep grief as life-long sadness. I am interested in learning life changing ways to use my experience to shine light on our human connection and power to create a balanced and nurturing future.
With this in mind, it feels right to ask you to join me on my path of transition and new normal. It feels right to think of this connection as the next step in the outpouring of community support from all around the world. It feels right to say to you when you ask if there is anything you can do to help me that what I need now is company on this path. You can join me in processing through the hardest things you have in your life while I do the same. We can support each other with accountability and encouragement. We can face our fears and see through them to the light on the other side.
Are you in?
If so, sign up for my FREE 4-part mini-series entitled Living an Embraceable Life by emailing [email protected] with Mini-Series in the subject line.