A message from Mariah…


This past week has been the worst week in my short 20 years of life.

For those of you who don’t know, on Thursday July 18th I lost my Nana to cancer.  It was the worst day of my life.  Upon hearing that she had passed, my heart sank. I felt as though part of it had been ripped out, and that my world was coming to an end.  I dreaded having to go to her funeral because it meant having to say goodbye.

On the morning of the funeral I sent out a message on Facebook and Twitter, asking for thoughts and prayers to help me get through it.  I entered the funeral home and took my seat.  I listened as the pastor talked about my Nana, and although he said a lot of encouraging and wonderful things about her, he would never know her like I did.  We headed to the cemetery to finish the service and to say our final goodbyes.  I watched as they lowered her casket into the ground and my heart sank even more.  Our last event of the day was a dinner at our church, and even though I was surrounded by family I still felt alone.

When I finally made it home I went into my room and turned on my computer. I opened up my email and saw an Ecard that some of the Ugly Ducklings had sent me.  I began to cry at reading their beautiful messages, and felt like all of my problems had disappeared.  It was in that moment I realized although I lost someone, I also gained something as well, and that is a family.  The Ugly Ducklings are my family and they have been by my side through this entire ordeal. They have offered more comfort than some of my own family and have even put a smile back on my face.

My advice to those who are going through a tough time in life is that the Ugly Ducklings will help you through it.  They are the most wonderful and caring people I have ever met, and cannot believe what they have created based off a tweet that Jennifer Morrison made. Every day I look forward to seeing what new things they are coming up with and I am proud to be a part of this life changing movement. They have helped realized that I am more than a duckling; I am a beautiful Swan, and no matter what life throws at me I will always have a family and will never be alone.  I am home.

*Mariah has recently joined the leadership of Ugly Ducklings Inc as the resource assistant. If you’d like to leave her a message of support, please do so by commenting on this post.


7 thoughts on “A message from Mariah…

  1. Beautiful article. I am sad to hear about your nana.. But so glad to hear that there is support in previously unheard of and astounding places… Great work, you and Erin!!

    • Hi Beautiflies (: I’m sorry for taking so long in replying, but here I am. As soon as I read this a smile was on my face. I want to thank you for this beautiful comment. It really helps us a lot, to keep us going. The door here is always open if you want to come and share your stories/art with us. Lots of love!

  2. I went through the same thing and i know that most people will say ‘it will get better’ and you don’t believe them because you think what do they know but trust me it does get better. We just passed the 5 year anniversary of my grandmas death in March. You get used i life without her but you never forget her. I was only 8 when she died but even now every time i turn around i get another reminder of her. You will always ask whether or not she would be proud of you but just remember that if you are living the life you want then she would always be proud of you and the life you are leading. Stay strong if you want to email me i am sure that you can. xxx

    • Sarah that was so beautiful, Thank you so much. Staying strong has been so hard. Today while I was working at our county fair I kept seeing women that looked like her and for a few seconds my mind thought it was her. I had to keep reminding myself that she’s gone. I also have been wondering if she is proud of me, and your right. She would be proud of me for just being me. Thank you for your encouraging words. I really love having someone who has gone through this already and can tell me it gets easier. Since the funeral I have been singing the song “Tomorrow” from Annie a lot. It calms me down. I would love to email you sometime, having someone to talk to really helps. Ugly Ducklings Stick Together!

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