Category Archives: General Grief

Sounds of Silence

It has been nearly 5 years since my son’s death. Five long years filled with a flurry of activity. Five years full of hope, sorrow and gratitude. We have been constantly in motion.

After Benny’s death we felt like we needed to live life to the fullest. Nothing makes you think long and hard about life than the death of someone young. I mean, my God, I’m going to die some day. It’s inevitable. And that day can be tomorrow or 50 years from tomorrow, but it’s going to happen.

We did a lot in that first year. We renovated our home, we traveled. We went to Disney World, we went cross country. It was important for us to be able to spend time with Darcy and try to figure out our family as just the three of us. As soon as we were close to even glimpsing what that was I was pregnant.

It was a boy. Another little blonde haired, blue eyed baby to remind us of what we lost. At the same time, he was a little reminder of hope that not all was lost. Besides sleep, we lost lots of sleep. And patience and probably a bit of sanity over this very demanding and loud little person.

And by the time he was old enough, there was the hint of another baby. And we decided to take over another business, oh and sell our home. My daughter’s birth was the quiet before the storm that brewed over the last year that turned our family’s life into complete chaos.

Four moves later, a year into a new business and the baby finally sleeps (a little anyway). We are finally home for good in the middle of the woods and the silence is deafening. Things seem slower, calmer for the first time in years.

We made the choices that guided us through our grief over the last 5 years. Some would say that we’re running from it. Possibly. Maybe it’s just our process. Maybe the keeping busy is our way of living life to it’s fullest.

Right now I’m going to enjoy the quiet. I’m going to savor every chance to sit on my deck and listen to peepers. I’m going to enjoy my opportunity to shower more than a few times a week because my kids are growing older. I’m going to spend some time looking at my grief from the lens of a now veteraned bereaved woman and try to figure out what it all means.

Things finally seem to be settling down. It might be time to take that for what it is and let it be.

Sounds of Silence

 

Don’t Look

I’m scrolling through social media, just trying to unwind or kill a couple minutes. I love the pictures of my friends baby, or the cute animal videos. It’s nice to just lose myself for a few minutes amongst the chaos.

And then there it is. A video, a picture someone posted without thinking. It’s a picture of an awful car accident that they took as they were driving by, or a video of a lifeless baby. It’s been shared by countless others and I can’t blame them for sharing it to.

It still makes me cringe. I cannot look. I do not want to view someone else’s worst moment. I have enough vivid memories of my own.

I don’t know why we feel it’s ok to share these images? Have we become that apathetic? I would be horiffied if any one of the people that were there with us in the street whipped out their phone and took pictures or started filming. To my knowledge that didn’t happen, but what if it did? What if it was shared? Would it humanize it a bit more?

I’m sad that we feel so little for others that we feel it is ok to do this. Please think before you post. That is someone’s child, mother, brother, friend.

I Finished A Book

This may seem silly or trite to some, but last week I read a book. A whole entire book. From start to finish. I even read the novella that followed.

Yes, it was a book that I’ve read before and yes, I was technically on vacation. But I did it! I actually read an ENTIRE book!

This is a huge deal for me. Since Benny died four and a half years ago, I haven’t been able to finish a book. At all. Which is a big deal because I used to be an avid reader. I would stay awake until the wee hours of the morning following some characters on a journey. I have always loved to read.

It’s killed me. I have not been able to finish a book. I would start, but not be able to finish anything. My nook account has been collecting dust instead of new titles. I now troll Facebook or Pinterest until I’m sleepy.

I don’t have seem to have the focus to be able to read. I don’t have the follow through to be able to finish what I’ve started. I’m distracted. All of the time. I’m on edge.

It makes me mad when I start to think about all of the other things that I’ve lost through grief. Friends, family members, peace of mind. It’s amazing how much it has shaped my life and who I have become. I’ve lost so much of my former self.

This made me happy. Gave me a glimpse of something possible. Even if it’s the only book I read all year. I still read a book.

 

 

I had forgotten

Tonight I went out with the girls to see the movie Bad Moms.  Absolutely hilarious, loved the message it sent.  I loved every moment of that movie and how it portrays how hard we moms have it.

At the end of the film, the cast was talking with their moms, sharing stories from their childhoods.  It was cute and funny and I found myself thinking, how would this work if one of the girls had lost their mom?  I watched the banter between mother and daughter and smiled.

Then one of the mom’s started tearing up and saying that she was so proud of her daughter as a mother.  She said that she was a great mom.  Such a simple, beautiful statement.  It nearly broke me in two as I realized that I will never hear those words from my own mom.

It’s been over twenty years and I am still shocked at how hard this hit me.  It was like a punch to the gut, realizing there was still more that I have missed.  I have been walking around for so long with this gaping wound on my heart and it was like someone sticking their finger in it.  Nothing has affected me as much as this has in so long.

It reminded me that no matter how normal I think I am, all it takes is a little trigger to remind me of all that I’ve lost.  It’s not as if I’ve ever forgotten my son or my mother, quite the opposite actually.  We talk about them all of the time in my house.  It’s more that I realized again how much was missing from my life.

I’ve cried buckets of tears over me not having a mom, over my children not having a grandma.  There are a million times that I wanted her here to fix things, like moms do, especially when my son died.  But I never once thought about how much I needed to hear from her that I’m doing a good job.  It never even occurred to me until tonight.

One of the lines in the movie is that parenting is so hard because you don’t know if you’ve done a good job until the kids are grown up and then it’s too late.  My mom never got to see what strong, independent daughters she raised.  She never got to see me as a mom.

I forgot how awful this feels.  I can’t believe that something so simple can turn me into a puddle so quickly.  So much of my life lately has been centered around the kids and I think that I sometimes forget that I need to take a break to check in with myself and see where I’m at.  And when I don’t, tonight happens.

I know it will never end, but when it hasn’t happened in awhile, it takes me a moment to catch my breath.  I wish that I could tell her what a good job she did.  I wish that I could tell her that I had a really happy childhood because of her.  I mostly just wish I could hug her and feel just for that one moment that everything would be ok again.