About the Author

Rachel Marie Kang is the author of Let There Be Art and the Social Media & Guest Post Manager for (in)courage. She is founder of The Fallow House and she lives in North Carolina with her husband and two children — connect with her at rachelmariekang.com.

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things we love
& you will too!
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Reader Interactions


  1. Missing our son, Tag (Taggart). This is our 5th Holiday Season without him & his birthday is the week before Christmas.
    He would be turning 28.
    It is so true that the greatest gift we receive is when he is remembered, talked about & our grief that never goes away acknowledged. ❤️

  2. Always missing my daughter Jordan who passed away 5 years ago at 34. I see her still at the table with us, making sure we play all the games by the rules, and sharing funny stories.
    Thank you for giving space to say her name, to feel the ache. As sure as the pain is deep so too is the depth of Christ’s comforting Presence.
    Your words are beautiful. ❤️

  3. Forever missing my son Jarod. His birthday is New Years Day, one week after Christmas. He is Forever 21, but he should be turning 24.
    Love and prayers to you, momma

  4. Thank you! This is so perfect for today. My dad, Dwaine Bowman, on Nov.8, 2008. Miss him very much still!

  5. I lost both of my parents last year. They always hosted Thanksgiving. Last year we ran away to the beach because I couldn’t face the holiday at home. We may do the same thing again this year. It’s hard. I miss them so much. My mom was my best friend.

    • Melody, I hope you do steal away and head for the beach. So soothing, and healing…and sometimes going to a new/different space is the only way to walk through what is hard. With you, and honoring both of your parents. Much grace to you ♡

  6. Missing my dad now gone 44 years and my mom 41. Cancer took them and left me for so long here without a family on Earth. Now missing my daughter for the second year. She is still on Earth but will not accept our belief in Jesus, as it does not agree with who she thinks she is in the world today.

    • Hi Nancy, thanks for sharing your heart today. Honoring your parents and remembering them with you today . . . and also just want to acknowledge the loss of not having your daughter in your life. I touch on this briefly in my new book, but this specific loss is so hard to say out loud because it’s often misunderstood or minimized. You are seen today, Nancy. And you are not alone. Wishing you grace as you walk through this season ♡

  7. Miss a lot of people in our family but biggest ache is my mama Rose.
    The same year my brother Frank and bro in law Richard.. But God. He’s giving time for many to still seek Him and save them.. oh what a Savior oh what a friend blessings Rachel

  8. Mu husband, Chuck, who I was married to for 40 years. Died by suicide 5 years ago and while I can now talk about him with fond memories, it still is so hard. Such a powerful and much needed read this morning.

    • Madeline, thank you for sharing Chuck’s name and sharing a snippet of your story. It’s so hard to share when someone you know died by suicide. I lost my cousin the same way — gone way too soon. I wrote about this in my new book. It helps to have safe spaces where we can whisper their names and our stories. Wishing you grace as you go about your season ♡

  9. Please pray for a young friend of mine who while one daughter was finishing up chemo, her 15 yr old was killed last week by someone she was dating. She is devastated!! She has 3 other daughters here that she has to keep going for. Please pray as the Spirit leads. Thx!

  10. Gone too soon- my mom, Nancy Slaton. This will be the 3rd holiday without her. Since her passing, our families have all drifted apart. To say she was the glue that held us together is an understatement. But I thank God that I was blessed to be loved by her for 56 years. And that she introduced me to the one who loved me more – Jesus!

  11. My dad’s name was Gordon. The last time I saw him in person was 2018; he told me he wanted to be “in the ground” by the time he was 70. He was in hospital at the time, and went directly to a care home. He turned 70 in January of 2020, and seemed to be enjoying his life surrounded by people – Dad was very much an extrovert with the biggest sense of humor! Then COVID came, and my poor dad was trapped in his bed. Family could visit at the window, but he could hardly hear and the rules were that the window had to stay closed. My Dad lost his fight to MS in June of 2021; I spoke with him via FB Messenger video chat on Thursday, and he was moved to palliative care the next morning. I will be forever grateful for the 18 months of video chats. So many screenshots, laughs and memories. Thank you for the space to share my dad today. <3 Sending prayers from my heart on behalf of yours.

    • Hello there, thanks for sharing so many stories about your Dad. I lost my grandfather (who I mention in this piece) to Covid, and the hardest part was losing him in the midst of so much isolation. What a gift to have had those 18 months — I know you cherish them. Honoring Gordon with you today, and wishing you grace that sustains throughout the season. ♡

  12. Today actually marks two years since my dad left us to go be with Mom, something he longed for since she had left 4 years previously. I opened my inbox to find your words waiting for me. Thank you and God bless you.

    • Hello Julie, I’m so glad these words were timely and reached you on this specific day. Honoring your parents with you today, and wishing you grace as you remember them in the days to come. ♡

  13. My beautiful Mama and her deep dimples that highlighted her easy smile. I also pre-ordered your new book and look forward to reading it with my Mama in my heart.

    • Hi Maura, wishing you many moments where you are reminded of your Mama’s dimples and smile. Honoring her with you today. And thank you for preordering my book. Seems so many of us our holding onto grief. May you find grace along the way. ♡

  14. My beautiful mother, Judy, and my dad, Doug. Both passed in 2021 within 6 months of each other. My mom, my favorite person, was my anchor. I have so many questions still to ask her as I parent my 4 kids and face middle-age..so many ways I still long for her guidance and strength. I’m eternally grateful that my parents were patient with my faith journey and planted the seeds that grew into a Christian walk. Missing them at the table today on my daughter’s 16th birthday and throughout the holiday season.

    • Hi Jenn — honoring both Judy and Doug with you today. I love how you share how they planted the seeds of faith in you. I trust you’ll continue to see your faith flourish . . . and that you’ll be able to honor them in how you plant and nurture the same seeds in the lives of your four kids. Grace to you, Jenn — today and through this season ♡

  15. Missing my sweet husband Brett. The one year anniversary of his passing was on November 4th. Grief is incredibly hard. He is always in my heart. I miss him everyday but he is at peace sitting with Jesus!

    • Thanks so much for sharing, Dawn. Honoring Brett with you . . . and sending you so much ♡ as you navigate the one year anniversary of his passing. Grief is hard . . . but you are held in God’s grace. Much love ♡

  16. Rachel death no matter how it happens is not nice especially if it becomes of love one in your family. More so if someone else took there like for no reason. God see what that person did and the saddness they left the person family. That person might get away with it when alive on earth no matter what made them do it. They are someone’s love one. The Family especially if saved have to it t hard see in their hearts to forgive that person. Yes that hard. Just like Jesus forgive us for all the wrong we do no matter big or small. No need if we hurt people. If saved we need to pray for them. No matter who we loose and no matter how they passed away no matter what age they age they are. We never forget them. But if we are saved they are saved we have good news we will see them again when our time up on earth. With Jesus one day in Glory and we have that to look forward. Yes we will miss them and the days and times we spent with them and the things they said and done. But we have good memories of all theses things. I lost loved one. I miss them. I am only one saved in my family apart from my Husband. I don’t know if my family that are not here anymore are in Glory. Even though I prayed for them and their salvation. I couldn’t tell them they needed to get saved as they would have said don’t preach your religion to us. I just had to live my life for Jesus in front of them. They knew I was saved. Love today’s reading. Love Dawn Ferguson-Little Enniskillen Co.Fermanagh. N.Ireland. In our prayers. Xx

  17. My brother passed away on Father’s Day 2022 after a long battle with brain cancer, he was only 58. Because of a long family feud my mother and sisters did not attend his funeral, therefore they were not there for me. People I thought were friends did not attend either as they didn’t know him, therefore they were not there for me. My own daughter put worldly things first and did not attend, therefore not there for me. My sister-in-law had a boyfriend within months (after a 30+ year marriage) and living the good life off my brother’s life insurance, maybe her way to deal with it or maybe just tired of all the pain and caregiving. My husband and son were both there for me. But I feel like I never really got to grieve. Things have happened in my life and he would have been the first I would have called. I miss him so much!

  18. Rachel, this is beautiful! Thank you! It’s been 15 years today since my dear Dad, Herluf Nielsen, was taken suddenly in a plane crash. He was a faithful lover of the Lord, his family and the land. I was newly engaged and just devastated. Tonight we light a candle, play his favourite country hits, and give a toast. God bless everyone who has shared their loss on the comments

  19. My son, Dennis Paul, died suddenly from an undiagnosed medical condition on Christmas Day last year. Although I will never stop missing him, my loving, faithful Lord is holding me close to His heart, comforting me, and filling me with His peace.

    • So, so sorry for the loss of your precious son. I know the pain. Sending hugs and love as the holidays
      without our children is especially difficult.

  20. Thank you for your post Rachel. Sounds like you grandparents were wonder people that provided you with a warm and safe place to grow.

    To all of you that are mourning loved ones – I pray that you feel wrapped in God’s warm embrace when you think of the people you love that have moved on to eternity.

    And to all who are mourning those they love that are still here on earth – may you find healing and peace through God’s grace.

    I miss my Mom who passed on Dec 21 2021. We were not close but I miss her for the mom she was and the mom she wasn’t. My mom fought a good fight against dementia for ten years. unfortunately those years were filled with much angst among her children and grandchildren. Relationships ended. So i also mourn the loss of my sister and her children. I miss the family i thought i had but never truly was.

  21. Holidays are still so very hard without my son, Chris, who was killed in Iraq 17 yrs 4 mos and 20 days ago. His birthday
    was Nov 5 and he would have been 38 but instead was only 20 when KIA. He was a Marine and served with an
    amazing group of men. He loved the holidays. I am forever thankful I waited to get the tree Christmas time 2005. Who
    knew it would be his last Christmas. My heart knows he is with the Lord but time on earth without him is hard.

    • Kat – I am very sorry you lost your very young, very brave son to war. thank you for raising a young man that was courageous and willing to make a sacrifice most of us would not make. May your son’s love of the holidays see you through the upcoming season. I pray you feel his presence when looking at this years Christmas tree.


    • Thank you for your comforting, encouraging words in response to my post on November 9 at 12:23 AM about my son, Dennis Paul. I am so sorry for the loss of your dear son, Chris. May our loving Lord be extra close to you this Thanksgiving and Christmas, filling your heart and mind with comforting, precious memories of your beloved Chris and whispering words of joy and hope, as you look forward to your reunion with him in Heaven.

  22. Thank you for sharing this–especially at this time of the year. The grief journey goes at its own rate and sometimes surprises us years later. We lost our niece, MIchelle to Covid, her Mom from a rare neurological disease and my husband’s brother–2 years ago. We have empty chairs. And while this was not a death, it leaves a hole in his heart. He loves all things historical. We were traveling literally down memory lane to see our great Grandparents’ home, built in the 1850’s, and discovered it was bulldozed. While death and losses don’t steal our love and memories, it sometimes overwhelms. Thank you for reminding me that God is always there and to support those who grieve

  23. I too know this pain. I lost both parents and my bestie of over 40 years within a 4 year period. It’s been so tough and most lonely. Although I have my hubby and my 3 kids, that void and absence is greatly felt. There’s nothing like losing your parents, I feel as if my roots were turn apart and I am just left wandering. This weekend my family and I are heading to one of my niece wedding in my childhood hometown and I know there will be many triggers and memories. I am forever changed and yet I know one day I will see them. Thanks so much for sharing this and reminding me that I am not alone and there are others who understand my grief too.. Sending all those who had lost a loved one hugs and healing during this holiday season.

  24. Rachel,

    Thank you for this post. I lost my cousin at the age of 52 to breast cancer 8 years ago. I still miss her. She was a mentor in so many ways to me, especially as she walked with God. She is also the one who introduced my husband and me. I do find comfort that he is now dining at the table of the Lamb, but I miss dining with her here in this world.

  25. I miss my husband Jeff! He has been gone 5 1/2 years now and while I know he is with Jesus (to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord) I miss him so much. The loneliness has intensified instead of lessening, as my daughters have both moved out to continue their lives. I would not hold them back from fulfilling lives for anything but oh the loneliness and awfulness of being alone!! Jeff and I talked constantly… so much, about anything and everything and I so long to share again! The little things and the big things and everything in between, there was nothing we couldn’t and didn’t talk about. I’m so lonely and have some health issues which makes the “aloneness” even worse. I never in all of my life imagined this for myself. I wish at times for someone to old with. Anyone reading I would love to have you pray for me. Thank you!

  26. And too I can relate with so much of what you have written! It feels like a special hug from someone who cares! Thank you!

  27. I miss my dad as the holiday season approaches. I went through a nasty divorce during the early covid times, and I struggle as a single mom. I really miss his guidance and his unwavering love and belief in me.

  28. I miss my brother, Rene. He was 56 years old when he passed from lung cancer and lymphoma. We used to jokingly tease each other who would get to take home certain Thanksgiving foods.
    I miss his fiance, Anne, who passed 6 months after my brother. She had medical issues that caused her death.
    I miss my loving Dad. ❤️
    I miss my in-law parents, so many other wonderful family members.

  29. What a beautiful and timely writing, Rachel. I’m already feeling the familiar pangs of loss though my husband has been gone many years now. I fight (but) lose the tension between this Joy-filled Season and that of my husband’s Homegoing Christmas Day 2007. May favorite Season, Fall, also brings on the dreaded pangs of loneliness. Your heartfelt writing helps me not feel so alone. I’ve ordered a hardback copy of your new book Hardback since I know I’ll make many underlines and comments. It is a gift to myself I look forward to like having a friend nearby with understanding. God knows the value of such a thing. Thank you for sharing your heart and gift!!

  30. Rachel,

    Life isn’t always easy or fair. Truth is people die everyday leaving families grieving. The holidays can be hard for those mourning loss. I had a friend who lost her mom on Thanksgiving day. Her step dad died New Year’s eve. The holidays aren’t always like Hallmark movies tied up in a bow. “Sometimes you need someone to ask you about your grief, to ask you about the one you love and mourn and miss. No platitudes, no putting tidy bows where pain still pulls.” Talking about your loved ones & remembering the good times can ease the pain a bit.

    Blessings 🙂

  31. I miss my Mother and Father so much. It’s been over 30 and 20 years but seems like yesterday. I never got to say goodbye. I know they are with Jesus and they are always with in my heart. Thank you for your story.

  32. I miss my parents and my sister. My mother died two years ago on Christmas Eve. She was like a child when it was time to open presents and always had to guess what was inside first. I still detour and drive past her house. I realize that the Christmas commercials make you feel less than what you should because of course they have filmed it more than once to make it look perfect. Nothing is perfect about our Christmas but as long as I am with my son, I am thankful!

  33. My brother Jon, My sister Mel and my dad. Back-to-back grief and navigating this during the holidays is a challenge. Thank you for your story of Hope.

  34. I have just begun learning, during the second half of my life, that it is ok to honestly share the ache during the holidays. I have been missing my Mom for 34 years, my Dad for 7 and longing for reconnection with 2 adult children for 2. In the meantime, I do hold onto the blessings in one hand, hope in the other. God is still and always good.

  35. My beautiful niece, Bethany, died this past March. Today would have been her 46th birthday. She is missed so terribly and I grieve with my brother and his family. I know she is in the presence of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ and with all the loved ones that went before. We had been estranged for the past 13 years and that adds to the hurt. I didn’t get a chance to say goodbye or tell her how much I loved her.

  36. My close friend died this summer after fighting cancer for several years. Our families often did Thanksgiving together as well as vacations at the beach. I’m glad her husband and kids and grandkids are all together today. I’m glad my friend is in Heaven, but I miss her.