Coping with Grief
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Anne was born in Seoul, Korea in 1982 and made our family whole four months later. She went through life focused on helping others, but succumbed to a seemingly endless uphill private struggle with bi-polar and OCD disorders on February 13, 2022.
She is survived by her heart broken and loving parents Wes and Linda Skoglund, sister Jenny, brother-in-law Alec Danielson, nephews Henrik and Axel, birth mother, brother, sister, and their families in Korea, as well as hundreds of relatives and friends.
Anne graduated from Minneapolis South and the University of Minnesota, Morris, with highest academic honors. She earned multiple athletic awards in cross-country skiing, cross-country running and track.
Professionally, she served in AmeriCorps, taught French to children and English to immigrants, nannied kids she adored and vice versa, had a creative side business called Jewel Nectar and recently started a job at the library.
Anne was an active member of Fabric Church, served as a canoe camp counselor at Camp Amnicon and Special Olympics downhill ski racing coach. She volunteered with Days for Girls, a group that sews reusable menstruation kits for impoverished young women in third-world nations so they can attend school without interruption. She shared her silky hair through Locks of Love.
Anne was an organ donor. Even though our hearts are shattered, we are warmed by the gift of life she gave to others.
Services will be held at Minneapolis Mount Olivet Lutheran (50th Street & Knox Avenue) Saturday Feb. 26th at 11AM. Please wear a mask, get immunized and practice social distancing. The service will be livestreamed. The link to the livestream for Anne's funeral service is http://mtolivet.org/livestream/
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Memorials can be made to Anne’s favorites: Fabric Church 3751 17th Avenue So. MPLS MN 55407, Camp Aminicon 8450 E Camp Amnicon Rd, South Range WI, 54874, the Anne Skoglund Scholarship fund at South High, 3131 S 19th Ave, MPLS, MN 55407 or another worthwhile cause. No flowers please. Give to a charity instead.
About Our Dear Anne:
Anne Elizabeth Marie Skoglund’s circle of life is now complete. She was born into a loving family in Korea in 1982 and four months later, became the answer to her American parent’s prayers.
Both of Anne’s families feel blessed to have had her as their daughter, sister, aunt, niece and cousin. She felt the same way about them.
For most of her adulthood, Anne faced a private struggle with anxiety and OCD disorders. She fought them with determination and inner goodness to survive. It was hard, but she won almost every battle.
Last September, Anne was diagnosed as also being bi-polar after enduring a serious episode and that made normalization for her more difficult.
Since then, she was hospitalized twice, participated in out-patient treatments and and did everything she could humanly do to get better for herself, family and friends.
Even though she was going through what may have been an internal agony, she remained her personable, pleasant and rational self on the outside.
Nobody really knows why things got so much worse. Maybe it was aging. She recently turned 40.
People here know that afflictions like Anne’s were neurological and physiological and she would have wanted it discussed for the greater good.
Anne’s brain disorders were as real as any other brain disease, like epilepsy or Parkinson’s. They can worsen with time and and can’t be “shaken off” or ignored.
Nobody knows whether they are caused by faulty brain wiring, programming, bio-chemistry, a combination of all three or something else. But the fact remains that they are real.
No quick cures exist. There are treatments like electroconvulsive therapy, (ECT), which helped Anne. There are medications, which help, but what works for one victim does not necessarily work for someone else, the category Anne fell into.
Balancing meds for people who have a bi-polar/OCD/anxiety diagnoses is especially difficult. Medications for bi-polar for example, can cause seriously bad reactions for OCD or anxiety treatments and vice versa.
It can take months or even a lifetime, like in Anne’s case, to find the right balance.
Over the years, Anne did everything she could to fight her illness. She prayed for help, read about and attended seminars on her diseases. She dealt with counselors, physicians, psychologists and psychiatrists. She got help in hospitals and from the Mount Olivet counseling center located across the street.
But in the end her afflictions took over and broke our hearts.
Anne’s family will be forever grateful to those who did their best to save her including her church, the medical profession, HCMC, Mount Olivet counseling, EMTs, Minneapolis Police Officers and Anne herself. She tried and tried and tried to get better.
The most important and effective efforts to give Anne normalcy came from the Fabric church community where she worshipped, loving friends ranging from babies to elders, teammates and her families on both sides of the ocean. Many of these angels on earth are present today.
Her symptoms shrank when she was around people she cared for and when she was doing things for others. You did everything you could to keep Anne going. She told us repeatedly about your goodness and how much she loved you.
Her psychiatrist and another clinician said that on some rare occasions patients suffering from the combination of bipolar, anxiety and OCD disorders temporarily develop mental tornados of uncontrollable self-destructive compelling obsessions, which include suicide. Sadly, we were told, that’s probably what happened to Anne. For an instant Anne was mentally blocked from thinking things through and took her life. She couldn’t help it.
It’s hard grasp how a loving and outgoing person like Anne could be afflicted by mental maladies. Her outward and true self, the part of her everyone witnessed was kind, friendly, funny, generous and community and church-oriented. That was the real Anne we knew from childhood.
She gave her time and money generously, even though she did not make much. Giving her gifts in return was difficult, because she lived simply and had all the material things she wanted. That’s why we gave her oil changes.
She wanted to befriend everyone, play with all the toddlers, hold every baby, meet new people and organize the campfire. Her warm feelings were genuine. That was the real Anne.
The only time she faked it was when she tried to conceal how much she was hurting inside.
Anne’s physical body died on February 13th after being kept on life support for organ donation purposes.
Wes ponders if her soul left her body on its heavenly journey two nights earlier in the late evening when his overwhelming grief was temporarily paused for about 40 minutes by an intensely tranquil and peaceful feeling about how “Anne is OK “
He didn’t hear any words or see any visions; he just felt peaceful because “Anne was OK”
An EEG conducted a little later that night showed minimal activity in Anne’s brain. It was time to let her go.
Anne’s troubles are over. She is OK and at peace with the Lord.
Still, her passing and the manner of her death, causes so many questions for the rest of us.
Family and friends ask what could we have done to save her? What should we have said or done? What did we do wrong?
The answer is nothing, other than finding a cure for the bi-polar, anxiety and OCD disorders. Nobody did anything wrong. Your love for Anne kept her alive.
Anne died from a serious medical condition, not someone’s mistake or omission.
Her family asks that you continue to pray for Anne’s soul, those who suffer from similar afflictions, yourself, your families, friends, and Anne’s families.
And thank God for giving us Anne to us. She was a blessing.