In my mind, I picture a door opening and two unsuspecting parents being thrown into this dark hole. You are kidnapped and being held against your will and life as you knew it just stops! Where am I? Who am I? And where is my life?
Then familiar faces appear. Other children, my children, with a look I never saw before in their eyes. They are in shock and need me to do something to help. I am powerless. Yes, dammit, a victim.
People are talking to me … People I recognize. Family and friends. I am grateful they are here but what is going on? What am I supposed to do now? Am I supposed to feed them or talk? Am I going to die from the shock of this horrific unthinkable event? I want my daughter back. That’s all I can think about!
Many times, there is no warning. One minute you are just living your life and the next moment you are consumed by a pain and loneliness nothing in this world has ever prepared you to handle.
I remember being catatonic. What? Amy is gone! No! No! No! My youngest child?! Please God! What did I do? This must be a mistake! Is it a dream? Nightmare?! No! No! No! Give her back You Indian Giver!
I walked outside of the hospital into the day and world that was still turning? But how could it turn without my daughter? How could the sun be shining so brilliantly? Stop shining! Stop the world and let me get off. Please!
Arrangements need to be made! Oh no! Not arrangements for my Amy. We just did this four months ago for my 90 year old mother-in-law and hadn’t recovered from that, but arrangements for my 27 year old daughter? This can’t be happening!
Then I moved through weeks and months in slow motion. People sent things. They said things. They seemed to care. Some more than others. They said all of the stuff I used to say before I knew those words do not apply to all situations.
There were actual times, when I heard the words in my head reminding me to forgive them for what they are doing which is compounding my pain. Yet, shouldn’t God/the universe protect me from any additional pain in the darkest hour of my life? Nope! It just doesn’t work that way!
I am sure I have scared many people away by my brutal honestly of what it’s like to live without my daughter. I will thank those who continue to support us despite risking being the topic of a rant on one of my postings. No worries … You have proved your depth and compassion and I know you care. Teach me how to treat you and help you is what you said. You didn’t throw a sandwich or a fruit basket at me and go on your merry way! You added some light and love to the foreign world where I now exist. You still do. I love you so much for having that inside of you! So many just aren’t wired that way.
Enter the lonely hearts club — the other grieving parents who intimately know my pain and the challenge I face each day to not only live but be present in a world that no longer makes sense. Those nodding head wonderful generous honest raw souls who reassure me that I have not been chosen all by myself to travel this painful journey through the rest of my time here. The ones ahead of me offer hope I can survive and the newly bereaved remind me that bad stuff really does happen to good people and that my Amy is in excellent company in the spirit world because their children are beautiful — just like my Amy. Thank you lonely hearts club. Your kindness and compassion has helped me more than I can say.
Remember Amy and all of the other amazing sons and daughters of my new friends.