The other day I heard a song that really spoke to me. Tonight I was telling Parker about it and how much of an impression it left. I honestly thought the song was by One Direction, which is not typically my taste at all. It was ‘I Lived’ by One republic. Completely off base there.
I just spent the last few hours listening to YouTube of Onerepublic, completely baffled at the fact that not only did I know every song, but they were some of my favorites. I’ve been living under a rock.
Now, we don’t watch the news at all, we don’t even have cable over here, so we’re a little out of touch. It’s sometimes hard having conversations with others because we are so out of the loop. It’s like someone turned off all of the background and there are times when I am grateful. To not worry about politics, or war, or whatever jaded view of the world is happening has been peaceful.
I hadn’t really realized it, but I guess in some respects we’re still in ‘the bubble’. It’s the illusion of safety in here. It’s just us that we worry about and all of the noise goes away. Maybe it’s a coping mechanism.
That’s not to say that we’re completely in the dark over here. There are times when I go crazy for not knowing something big that happened, like Ferguson, or Sony. Maybe I just can’t handle too much, so I limit my exposure. Maybe I just don’t care anymore. Perspective is amazing.
In any case, I Lived is a beautiful song for children. It’s everything that I hope for Darcy. The fact that the video chronicles the life of a boy with CF just made me love the song that much more. No parent could say it any better. And even though Benny’s life was short, he definitely lived.
What started out last year as a ‘last minute 5k’ for the Greg Hill Foundation has grown into something else. To quote my friend Erin, “Amazing how less than two years old and he has the power to gather the masses. An incredible day to honor and cherish Benny.”
This year we had over 50 people walking/running last Saturday, it was incredible! We were easily the largest team to participate in the event. Watching the sea of Benny shirts on the route was inspiring. To know that this many people turned out to support our little guy and our family. We had folks traveling from CT and NH just to walk with us. There was so much love in that crowd.
Santa was there as well as cookies, candy and carolers to keep us moving. This year it was a balmy 35 out, so we didn’t freeze! Afterwards we went over to 29 Sudbury to carb up great food and free beer while we listened to the live entertainment and watched the kiddos run around.
People sent in donations for us to drop off as well and we were able to turn over an additional $120 to the foundation. It was an incredible day and an incredible feeling to be surrounded by that much love. Thank you once again Benny’s Bunchers!! Thank you GHF for all that do to support local families and bring us some hope during our darkest hours!!
I remember when this happened, I cried. I had 2 nephews in school in CT and had no idea if they were safe. I was sad for days over children and teachers that I had never met. I kept saying ‘I can’t imagine how you survive something like this…’ It wasn’t a year later and Benny was gone.
No matter what side of the gun battle you’re on, the first few paragraphs written by this mother speak to me. They speak volumes about our life now. What the death of a sibling does to the other siblings. I can relate to a parent of Sandy Hook. It makes me so sad.
Sandy Hook Article – Please Read
I’ve written a lot about the disappointments surrounding child loss and the stupid things that people say. There’s really nothing that anyone can say to make it better when your child dies. A year later, I can look back and tell you what people said that helped to make it bearable. These phrases have stuck with me.
“We WILL get you through this.”
“Benny was a lucky boy and I couldn’t have hoped for two better people to be his parents.”
“You are the best mom. I parented like you, I used to come home and tell my husband that you said to do something a certain way, so that’s what we did.”
“I lost my son too. You will survive this.”
“You will find a way to turn this around, you always do. You will turn this into something to help others.”
These words weren’t the typical platitudes, but spoken sincerely and from the heart. A year later and I haven’t forgotten.
A week or so ago I had a doctors appointment. I was sitting down with the nurse and an intern to go through the normal ‘stuff’ and she and I were chatting. I had seen her at the doctor’s several times and we had always exchanged pleasantries.
She asked me how many children I had. My normal answer is to say that I have a daughter. This time I said that I have two and I held my breath to see where the conversation would go. She asked how old and I told her that Darcy had just turned six. I then took a deep breath and said that I had a son and that he had passed.
The intern kept doing what she was doing, completely unfazed, but the nurse stopped and looked at me. She asked if I had just said that my son had passed and I told her yes, he had. She looked at me and said she was sorry and I kept waiting for ‘the look.’ What happened next took me by complete surprise. She told me that she had lost one of her daughters 2 years ago. She was one of ‘us’, she got it. She talked about her daughter and I talked about Benny.
I wanted to give this woman a hug, she had just made the first time that I really told a stranger about Benny pretty damn easy. I was sad for her too though. Here was this woman that I had talked to several times, never knowing that she knew all too well my pain. We’re everywhere, moving forward through life, even though we don’t want to.
This moment brought me up short. Suddenly, I didn’t feel so alone. It was like the hospital all over again. Another stranger reaching out and making it ok for us. I truly believe that Benny was all over this too.